Five days after it was agreed to in principle, a trade that will send Mookie Betts and David Price from the Boston Red Sox to the Los Angeles Dodgers appears to have been finalized.

Outfielder Alex Verdugo, infield prospect Jeter Downs and catching prospect Connor Wong are reportedly on their way to Boston. Los Angeles will make a separate deal with the Minnesota Twins to send right-hander Kenta Maeda and cash to Minnesota for right-hander Brusdar Graterol and a 2020 draft pick.

Boston was initially set to receive the 21-year-old Graterol in a three-team trade, but concerns about his health and whether or not he profiled as a starter or reliever gave the Red Sox cold feet. Graterol underwent Tommy John surgery in 2015 and was shut down for two months last season because of a right shoulder impingement.

Minnesota sent him to the Dodgers instead, getting Maeda and some $10 million in cash.

ESPN and The Athletic reported the details Sunday night, appearing to put an end to an ugly impasse that lingered through the end of the week. The Red Sox balked upon receiving Graterol’s medical information and demanded additional prospect capital from Minnesota to complete the transaction.

The Twins were prepared to walk away from discussions late Saturday night before striking an independent trade with the Dodgers.


Boston is parting with one of baseball’s premier players. According to FanGraphs, only Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout has posted more wins above replacement than Betts since 2016. Betts, 27, was the American League MVP in 2018, a four-time Gold Glove winner and a three-time Silver Slugger.

Price has started just 63 games over the past three seasons, but his playoff performance during a run to the 2018 World Series title went a long way toward exorcising his October demons. The 34-year-old left-hander won the clinching games in the American League Championship Series against the Houston Astros and the World Series against Dodgers.

Betts has repeatedly said he will test the free agent market prior to the 2021 season, and the Red Sox were simply unwilling to take a chance on him walking away without receiving some sort of value in return.

Boston is also shedding about half the dollar amount remaining on Price’s contract, which runs through the 2022 season. New Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom has achieved the goal set by principal owner John Henry of slipping under the first threshold of the league’s Competitive Balance Tax.

The Red Sox remove roughly $40 million in payroll for the upcoming season – $27 million in the one-year deal Betts signed to avoid arbitration and about half of the $31 million average annual value commanded by Price. Los Angeles will pick up the remaining half of Price’s salary as it attempts to capture a first championship since 1988.

Verdugo made $560,000 in 2019 and is likely the only player sent by the Dodgers who will break spring training on Boston’s roster.


Price’s departure and Rick Porcello’s one-year deal with the New York Mets leaves the Red Sox with a thin starting rotation. Chris Sale and Nathan Eovaldi both missed extended time because of injuries in 2019, and only Eduardo Rodriguez enjoyed what could be qualified as a strong year.

Bloom now has roughly $20 million to work with below the CBT should he seek to make a late free-agent addition or another trade.

Verdugo was a consensus top-40 prospect in baseball and made his debut with the Dodgers in 2017. The 23-year-old slashed .282/.335/.449 in 158 games for the Dodgers, and hit .294 with 12 homers in 106 games last year. He won’t be eligible for free agency until after the 2024 season.

Downs is a top-50 prospect according to and immediately moves toward the head of the Red Sox system in that regard. The 21-year-old infielder reached Double-A last season and slashed .276/.362/.526 with 24 home runs, 35 doubles and 24 stolen bases across two levels. He’s the younger brother of Jerry Downs, a Boston prospect who played for the Portland Sea Dogs in 2019.

Wong, 23, becomes the top catcher in the Red Sox system. A third-round pick out of the University of Houston in 2017, Wong slashed .281/.336/.541 at Class A and Double-A last season, with 24 home runs and 24 doubles in 111 games.

When the Betts trade was first delayed, it also held up a trade in which the Dodgers were prepared to sent outfielder Joc Pederson and right-hander Ross Stripling to the Angels for infielder Luis Rengifo and a pair of prospects.

The Athletic reported Sunday night the Dodgers-Angels trade has been called off the proposed deal.

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