With trade talks, rumors, and anticipation between the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers concerning Superstar Gold Glove and Silver Slugger recipient Mookie Betts, it may be easy to overlook a possible bonus to the trade package: veteran lefty David Price.
The outcomes of acquiring Price could prove to be beneficial. To start, adding veteran depth to the Los Angeles bullpen, even amidst up and coming young talent, cannot be undervalued. After failing to sign talent in the offseason to replace the loss of Hyun-jin Ryu and Rich Hill, there is still a gap to fill, and if there is a possibility Price could be in the mix of a deal that would land Mookie, it would appear to be a win-win situation, right?
Here’s where it gets maybe not-so worth it. Considering the Red Sox have shown a interest in Dodger center fielder Alex Verdugo in the Mookie Betts package, attempting to acquire David Price in the mix could almost certainly mean parting ways with him, along with valuable prospects. Prior to his injury, Verdugo had a breakout rookie season, Bringing a 3.4 UZR, 2 OAA, and 13 defensive runs saved. His offense spoke no different, with a slash line of 294/.342/.475, including 12 home runs and 44 RBI, the second lowest K% on the team at 13, and a team leading contact% at 85. He unfortunately missed the remainder of the season following his, back injury in early September (not to mention being placed on the IR in August due to an oblique Strain), but he has youth and health on his side now, and the potential to make another big impact on the Dodgers in 2020. He appears to be, to me at least, something to really hold on to.
On the other end of the spectrum, David Price also had an injury riddled couple of seasons. Despite showing three appearances in the 2018 WS and posting a 16-7 record and a 3.58 ERA, price was held to a mere 176 IP due to carpal tunnel and a wrist contusion. In the most recent season, Price again spent time on the IR due to continuing wrist problems. While he is a very seasoned player, seeing 12 years of professional baseball, and clearly has the ability to perform on the mound when he is healthy, the concern arises over “when” he is healthy. Unlike Alex Verdugo, David price as age to factor in, 11 years more so than him in fact. While age isn’t always everything, the last two seasons have shown a downward trend in his ability to maintain a healthy throwing arm. So my question to you is, will David Price be an asset of value to the Dodgers bullpen assuming he can remain healthy, bringing experience and relatively decent talent to the rotation, or, is he to much of a dice throw considering his recent decline, growing age, and the remaining interest of Alex Verdugo in Boston.
I’m having a really hard time imagining that they would give up Verdugo if they take on Price. Everything you mentioned above about Verdugo it valuable to this team and they have other players they could trade. We’ll see what happens but I hope Verdugo doesn’t end up in Boston.