Is this real life? After nonchalantly warning that Adrian Gonzalez’s passage through waivers did not yet signify a move would take place, it seems the Dodgers were intent on completely overhauling their club. Various reports from innumerable sources suggest the Dodgers are set to acquire not only Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Nick Punto and Josh Beckett in exchange for a package of players including James Loney, recent Tommy John patient Rubby De La Rosa, 1B/DH prospect Jerry Sands, outfielder Ivan DeJesus and pitching prospect Allen Webster.

If the Red Sox aren’t kicking in any cash to help this massive deal go through, the Dodgers assume more than $250 million in salary. The bulk is owed to Gonzalez ($127 million through 2018) and Crawford ($103 million through 2017), with both players just completing the second year of their long-term deals. Josh Beckett nets a mere $32 million in the next two seasons. Chump change, really.

The Dodgers new ownership promised they would spend to contend but this…this is something else all together. Benny Fresh of MLBTB suggests this deal won’t be completed tonight but it looks like it is a go. Wow. Wow wow wow wow.

 

Where to begin? The Red Sox, under new General Manger Ben Cherington, are pounding on the reset switch like the computer returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown in Madden. With so much money coming off the books, the Red Sox are poised to either dive directly back into the free agent market for just about anything; or they can go a similar route to the Dodgers and assume somebody else’s expensive mistake.

The Dodgers get better IMMEDIATELY thanks to the significant upgrade represented by Gonzalez versus Loney. As for their future? They just assumed a quarter billion dollars of tremendous risk. As noted earlier today, Gonzalez is a durable slugger who will end up overpaid but, in this world, who isn’t?

Carl Crawford is a one hundred million dollar wildcard. Currently staring down the barrel of six months worth of rehab after Tommy John surgery, Crawford battled injury and ineffectiveness since joining the Red Sox. Crawford was a legit 5 WAR star for the first six years of his career, the Dodgers believe he will return to those levels (or close to them) after his elbow heals.

Josh Beckett might benefit from pitching in a much friendly ballpark in front of a less hostile media horde but it ain’t gonna put 3 mph back onto his fastball. If Beckett gets back to where he was, he becomes the second best pitcher on the club. If not…well Dodger Stadium has a funny way of keeping aging/declining pitchers around.

Nick Punto is also a professional baseball player included in this deal. For this he should be commended.

The Red Sox get one of the worst everyday first basemen of the modern era, a live armed reliever/starter in De La Rosa, a decent prospect in Webster (though not the Dodgers top arm Zach Lee) and other things. They also get to spend all the 2011 money — the incredible outlay of that made them consensus World Series favorites before the season — all over again, should they see fit.

If anyone can think of a comparable situation in baseball, in any sport, in recent history, feel free to share. The details are not yet set in stone but this deal…as currently constructed…this is surreal. Any contract can be moved. No deal is a team killer. The Dodgers have already completely changed the face of the baseball marketplace as we know it and the offseason hasn’t even started yet. The Red Sox essentially get a complete re-do on their massive 2011 spending spree. Whoa boy. Got a butt? Better hold onto it.

Comments (31)

  1. So the Jays are essentially fucked when it comes to free agents. Pardon my french.

    • Because Boston seems like a real great team to sign with? Y’know, as long as you’re willing to get shit on by ownership after your first year of seven doesn’t live up to the expectations of the contract THEY FUCKING OFFERED YOU, and then kicked out the door as a salary dump less than a year after that, but only after enduring a shitstorm season of media scrutiny, scandal, rumour, and general unmanageable clusterfuckery for no good goddamn reason. WHERE DO I SIGN???

      • Different gm – purging bad contracts. Saying it paints the org negatively is like suggesting dickhead Toronto fans screaming at youk represent all of us.

        • Seriously? Who is different in that organization beyond Theo? Cherington was there when the deal was signed. I think it absolutely looks brutal– almost as bad as the stinkhole of a situation a free agent would be diving into should he sign there. Money talks, sure, but all things being equal, Boston doesn’t look like a first choice destination, at least this winter. (Not that Toronto is, either… or ever.)

      • interesting story: shortly after Pujols signed with the Angels Hunter told him about the notorious evening weather in LA that kills fly balls. every knows about that, right? not Pujols. i think we give free agents more credit than they’re due – they really do just want the guarantees – money and/or winning. right now, the Jays cannot solidly sell either. i consider Boston back until further notice.

    • Is there any reason to think the Jays were going to go after the elite, high priced free agents that the Red Sox routinely look to acquire, anyway? Don’t Beeston/AA still have some ridiculous rule about not going over five years for FAs?

  2. Maybe this LAD team can finally end the SF Giants circle jerk known as getting blanked.

    Hopefully the Giants will spiral into Mediocrity for years to come.

  3. Who would the red sox target for 2013?

    Can we send them Adam Lind?

  4. As a die-hard Sox fan, I just really don’t know what to make of this deal yet. Thank God Beckett is gone of course, but aside from that…I’m feeling a whole lot of nothing, although the idea of a reset is intriguing. Fun times with Bobby V continue!

  5. Does this tarnish Epstein’s legacy in bean town? I think he has got to be one of the more overrated gms today. Even John Cleese couldn’t get rid of three albatrosses in one go!

  6. So, which team vying for teh NL wild card is kicking themselves over not claiming Beckett of AGon before it got to the Dodgers?

  7. “If anyone can think of a comparable situation in baseball” – Jesse Chavez was traded on the same day, for Cash. I don’t understand why we need another catcher, but hey, whateva!

  8. I agree with Stoeten that its going to be pretty interesting to see how free agents react to Boston next off season because of how completely crazy things have been in that clubhouse over the past 24 months, and the fact that they’ve just signaled that they don’t care how long a contract is for – they’ll ship you out at the first convenient moment.

    Now if they offer the most money will that make a difference? Tough to make that claim. If a player was already weary of signing in a place like that then sure one could see them turning down bigger money to preserve their mental health. Still money talks, and most players still remember Boston’s championship years – meaning there will be an opportunity to make a killing on the market and to contend.

    I do think, however that this will certainly at the very least complicate matters greatly for the Jays this off-season. Both AA and Beeston have upped the rhetoric lately about making a move. The reality is that they are no further ahead this season than they were last. Everything that could go wrong (save Encarnacion and a few BP arms like Janssen) did go wrong. In retrospect I wonder if they regret not making a bigger splash last season when there were options available to upgrade which could have helped to potentially make this a more attractive place to come to.

    Toronto is going to be an incredibly tough sell this offseason. Toronto is once again a bottom team. The pitching staff is in tatters. The youth that at the start of the season looked so promising has been battered. Hutch and Drabek face long recoveries from injury, while Alvarez has struggled. Romero is a basket case and Morrow hasn’t pitched since June.

    The assumption was that Toronto would progress and that the free agent moves following this season would put the team over the top. Well that didn’t work out. The question is – does mean that AA’s only viable option is to make trades to make sure he gets controllable years in return for prospects?

    This Red Sox deal could potentially open up the market a little as teams react. It will be interesting to see what the fallout will be. Its too bad but it looks like any thoughts of contention in Toronto may have been delayed by a season because of the clusterfuck we’ve witnessed so far.

  9. I know people think this is a good way for Boston to spend in free agency, but that’s missing 2 key points:

    1) Didn’t spending wildly in free agency get them into this problem in the first place?
    2) Haven’t virtually every big $$ signing since 2004 worked out poorly for Boston? Lugo, Dice-K,the Lowell extension, you could argue JD Drew, Mike Cameron, John Lackey, the Beckett extension, Crawford, Jenks…

    I mean you can argue that Theo did those deals, but Cherington was a part of the front office at some point too. And his moves this season (going into SS with Aviles/Punto, the Scutaro trade, the Bailey trade, the Lowrie trade, the Youk trade) have pretty much all backfired on him. So I’m not exactly sure that Boston spending in free agency is the way to go.

  10. De La Rosa too?

    damn, there goes our hopes for the Rubby and Tuffy show next year! :(

  11. “Nick Punto is also a professional baseball player included in this deal. For this he should be commended.”

    Me likey.

  12. The Jays will be fine – I don’t think Toronto and Boston will be going after the same free agents anyway. The Jays will be looking at the trade market for pitching and Boston will probably go hard after Grienke.

    I’m not the kind of Jays fan that generally gets upset when they don’t go after big contracts, but it can be frustrating for Jays fans to see them pass up, in one year, two of the premier first-baseman in baseball while trotting Adam Lind into the cleanup spot game after game (when he’s healthy) while playoff teams go after those players. That said, I’m happy with EE at first and bringing in a good DH.

  13. Finally the recognition I deserve. I AM a professional baseball player. THANK YOU!

  14. that shit cray!

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