The Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox are, according to multiple reports, on the verge of the biggest August trade ever – indeed, it’s one of the biggest trades of any kind ever. The deal will reportedly send Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, and Nick Punto (otherwise known as “the Red Sox”) to the Dodgers for Rubby De La Rosa, James Loney, Jerry Sands, Ivan De Jesus, and a “top prospect” (thought to be Allen Webster, the pitcher the Cubs so desperately wanted for Ryan Dempster). Based on that return, the presumption is that the Dodgers will be taking on almost all of the remaining dollars on the contracts for the Red Sox players – which, combined, total more than $250 million *after* this season.

The Dodgers have gone outside their mind.

I understand that the new Dodgers’ ownership wants to flex their financial might, and I understand that they have a nice age 29/30-ish core (Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, Chad Billingsley, Hanley Ramirez) plus Clayton Kershaw. But you’re talking about a 32-year-old Beckett, a 31-year-old Crawford, and a 30-year-old Gonzalez, all of whom are going to decline in the near term. Indeed, Beckett is already a disaster this year, and Crawford is now recovering from the Tommy John surgery he just had yesterday.

Make no mistake, the Dodgers are going to look loaded after this deal, and for the next year or two. But those contracts and the aging curve are going to take their toll, and sooner rather than later.

Consider this: the last time folks looked up and down a roster and remarked how absurdly stacked it was? The 2011 Boston Red Sox in Spring Training.

We still have to see how the money part of this shakes out, but this is looking like a brilliant stroke by new Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. The Red Sox will now have to rebuild, but this will give them an absurd amount of money to work with, and they could be right back into things in 2014. Heck, they could be back next year.

  • cubs4life

    i thought there was a rule in regards to trading players on the DL? i didnt think you could do it..

    • Brett

      That’s one of those popular myths that floats around for some reason. Simply not true.

      • cubs4life

        ohh ok. thanks for the clarification brett

        • cas-castro

          I would say its more common for a position player than a pitcher. Wasn’t everyone’s favorite Blake DeWitt on the dl when the Cubs got him a few years ago. I could be wrong.

  • cubs4life

    either way, your right brett.. dodgers i think lost their minds…

  • ramy16

    Its crazy huh Brett…i live in Socal…dumb Dodger fans are acting like they won the World Series… The prize as we know is Adrian Gonzalez!

  • jr5

    Why do people look at the Red Sox’s financial flexibility and think “they’ll be contending by 2014 at the latest”, but the Cubs, with arguably more financial latitude (in terms of future commitments) in a weaker division, project to be contending in 2015, at the earliest?

    That’s an honest question, I’m not trying to be superfanboyguy. It just seems odd to me. I know you don’t want to spend for spending’s sake, but if a guy is available who makes sense, (premium talent with prime years remaining) the Cubs better be in on them, and not just in a lip service sense.

    • Flashfire

      Despite Brett’s joke that the Dodgers are getting “the Red Sox” — look at the rest of their roster: Lester, Pedroia, Middlebrooks, Ellsbury, Bard, and Bucholtz aren’t going anywhere, and you’re adding de la Rosa and Webster in the near term. They’re just much closer to competing than the Cubs are.

      • Brett

        Yeah – the Red Sox aren’t being ripped apart down to the studs in the same way the Cubs are (and had to be).

        • DocPeterWimsey

          And, in fairness, the remaining core could easily contend next year for the Sox. Crawford couldn’t contribute due to injury. AGonz was good, but really not as great as he should have been. All in all, the Sox really are losing AGonz from their present roster, as Becket’s woes have left him only slightly better than replacement.

          The big issue will be adding a solid starting pitcher. (Beckett could have been that guy, but now he obviously will not be.) And, of course, there are the other issues: can Els stay healthy? Will Buchholz & Lester be healthy? Etc. However, this team has had disastrous luck this year and still managed to be a 0.500 team in the AL East. Just think of how good the Cubs’ luck would have had to have been for them to be a 0.500 team this year!

          • Flashfire

            Supposedly they get Webster, who fills in the rotation nicely on the 2014 whiteboard.

        • hansman1982

          well the Sox ARE being ripped down to the studs…they just have far more and better studs than the end of season 2011 Cubs had. It’s like rebuilding a Corvette vs. an Impala. If you want them both to go fast there are things you have to do, just you have a longer, more expensive road ahead of you in the Impala.

          • Cubbie Blues

            Yeah, the Impala you would have o get rid of the the engine, might as well remove the body then your left with a rolling chassis. At that point it would make since to change out frames to something a bit more rigid that can take the torque you want. Now your ready to tart making something.

    • Kurt

      You’ve nailed it JR.

      Cub fans alwaaaays see the pasture as greener on the other side.

      Another Cub fan truism is that the Cubs should eat every contract for a “B” prospect and then go out and by a team.

      I wonder if the average fan recognizes that by eating all the contracts the typical fan thinks they should eat and then buying the players the want to fill the void would require a payroll of 350+ million plus.

      • baldtaxguy

        Yea, that’s clear.

  • Flashfire

    Allen Webster hurts but, yeah, given the Dodgers take here it appears there was no way in hell we were getting him.

  • Kevin

    Have all players involved already cleared waivers?

    • Brett

      They didn’t all clear, but, yes, waivers are no longer an issue.

    • Flashfire

      De la Rosa makes no sense to me, if he has. I’d think everyone would jump at him.

      • Brett

        He did not clear waivers, apparently, but will be included in deal as a PTBNL – a nice work-around for prospect types on the 40-man.

  • gblan014

    I understand how the others cleared waivers, but how did Adrian Gonzalez not get claimed? Also, spot on with the Gary Busey picture. It’s awesome.

    • Brett

      Gonzalez technically didn’t clear waivers, he was claimed by the Dodgers – but that does mean he got past every AL team and every NL team with a worse record than the Dodgers. My guess? His contract is huge, and also, teams that aren’t planning to make a legit trade offer for someone like that don’t claim him, because they don’t want to be dicks. (Lest it happen to them in the future.)

  • Bric

    The only thing that really shocks me is how long it took the Dodgers to get their payroll up into the Yankee range. If McCort’s wife hadn’t been spending among other things 100 k plus tip of the team’s payroll on a personal psychic advisor (really, google it- the expense reports that came out in the divorce proceedings are shocking) the Dodgers would’ve had a 200 mil + payroll years ago. New owners, same stupid money.

    • FFP

      This is baseball. We pay eight dollars for a draft and 125 per month for the cable package. It’s all stupid money. (But I didn’t know about that Nancy Reagan thing, Bric. Thanks )

  • ramy16

    Now they are waiting for Josh Becketts approval.. Hes got 10/5 rights…Crawford also has a trade clause…considering that hes going to a winner they dont foresee a problem

  • ramy16

    Sources say it will not be completed tonight

    • Flashfire

      As the Dodgers get to experience the joy of a pitcher putting them over the barrel with no trade rights. Enjoy, Ned.

  • Brian Peters

    Lol!! The Dodgers are stoopid!!

    • Mick

      Are they?

      • Mick

        They’ve acquired Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, and Joe Blanton for a couple of prospects. If they’ve got the budget and want to win now, is that stupid?

        • Flashfire

          They’re taking on $250 million in liabilities for guys that an even bigger spending team wants nothing to do with, and apparently giving up their #2 prospect and 2010 Pitcher of the Year for that honor. Stupid.

  • Brian Peters

    Crawford has done NOTHING but get hurtsince he was in TB, Gonzalez is not a great ball player, and Beckett is going to bring his Bud Light-drinking, KFC chicken-eating fool ass to LA. Time will tell, of course, but this, to me, is not a solid baseball move. They can spend all the money they want…I just wouldn’t spend it on these guys. I’ll go out on a limb and say Crawford will not respond well to the TJ surgery, Beckett will get three DUIs in a week’s time, and AGon will…….continue to play mediocre ball in a big city. But I could be wrong…….

  • Josh Z

    So the Sox can trade Carl Crawford, a man making $108.5 million over the next 5 years, who has played in 161 games over the past 2 seasons , with only 152 hits, coming off of Tommy John surgery; yet the Cubs can’t trade Alfonso Soriano who is owed $36 million over 2 years but is on pace for 100 RBI’s in the worst lineup imaginable and has hit 20 HR’s 11 straight years. Makes sense

    • Flashfire

      Crawford doesn’t have a NTC. That’s the difference. Otherwise, Soriano would be a Giant.

      • Josh Z

        He does though and so does Beckett.

        • Flashfire

          Which is why this deal hasn’t happened yet — and still may not.

      • hcs

        Crawford has two teams in his NTC, whereas Sori has full no-trade rights.

    • Diesel

      Why is it everyone is clamoring to trade Soriano? Everyone keeps talking about his value and production but don’t want him to the point they want to pay damn near all his salary to get rid of him. Why wouldn’t we want his production but feel that every other team should. If you are willing to pay him anyway we might as well keep him. He isn’t a zambrano. He is not a cancer and has never quit on this team and has worked to improve his defense this year. He is a positive leader on this young team. Also when he is booed, a lot of times unfairly, his typical response is yes it hurts to be booed by the home fans but it means that he has to work harder to get better so he doesn’t get booed. He has a great attitude and I say let him finish his contract unless he becomes a dick.

  • supergeek24

    Crawford is a very highly paid fourth outfelder

    • Carew

      when he got his contract, he was arguably the best outfielder in the AL…poor guy just couldnt stay away from the injury..

  • EB

    Absolute brilliant trade by Cherington. He just shed 270 million dollars worth of mostly dead weight in one trade. It could help the Dodgers for a year or two, but in 3 or 4 years they are going to be looking like the Cubs circa 2010 & 2011 with a bunch of players in their mid-30’s making boatloads of cash

    • baldtaxguy

      Yes, I believe you are right.

  • gutshot5820

    It is almost comical that players on the Red Sox will agree to waive their no trade clauses on a team that has won two Championships in the last ten years and Cub players that are on one of the worst teams in baseball refuse to agree to be traded. It is a joke. Theo was right when he said the other day that players are treated too well in Chicago. Start benching players that have no future on the team, like Red Sox did with Youkillis and maybe they would be more eager to be traded.

    • baldtaxguy

      I believe its one Cub player who is refusing to be traded, because he can. Dempster never really refused to be traded, just mucked it up (use of his rights).

      The Boston plyers can’t get away from that FO, ownership, and Valentine fast enough, especially after the texting drama. They see much greener grass, and a chance to be in the Series this year. Not a comparable ( and certainly not a comical) situation to that of the one Cub player who earned his right to veto a trade.

    • Flashfire

      The Red Sox actually DO have a major problem after this season. Given their treatment of Youkilis and Gonzalez (his childhood idol was Ted Williams and he dreamed all his life of playing for the Red Sox, and so signed an under-market deal to make that happen), how many potential free agents are going to want to play there? Boston will have to wildly overpay for anyone.

      • baldtaxguy

        Valentine is the real reason a free agent will pick the other team.

        • notcubbiewubbie

          boy amazing what a dick lucchino and valentine must be.

  • Jdawg

    On a better note at least the Bears offensive line looks awesome! sorry I’m laughing too hard at that one.

  • Curt

    how can this be a good deal for la outside Gonzalez , Beckett is a cancerous, overpaid waste, and Crawford has done nothing since tampa bay, it looks like a great trade on paper, but wow if the cubs were in the same position I’d hope theo and Jed would say hell no to this mega trade

    • baldtaxguy

      Both the players and Boston mgmt likely believe they need a change of scenery, thus both willing to part company. I suspect that there are more of you publicly calling them names and shitting on the deal, and I would guess that may be ultimately prove motivating performance-wise.

  • TSB

    Nick Punto is the key… (LOL)

  • @Zorag

    Living in Albuquerque, we get to eatch LA’s AAA team, the Isotopes. I’d take Sands on the Chicago Cubs roster today. The other AAA players are not just prospects, either. Any of them could be in the Majors soon.

  • ramy16

    EB your sure right.. When the Cubs are the favorite in 2014-2015 the Dodgers will be stuck with a bunch over paid players! Let the Dodger rebuild begin in 2014! With this trade from today they better win the world series! Becuz the Dodgers just got swept by the Giants!…as of right now the Giants have the better pitching staff!

  • Crockett

    Los Angeles has BILLIONS to spend. Insanely wealthy owners group.

    PR victories are all they care about right now, and this is an ENORMOUS one.

    • FFP

      Good post. This is a huge market. They’ll take a slice. Sell a tranch. Leverage a percentage. I think Michael Lewis is going to get another book out of this. And I’ll read it.

      • FFP

        Tranche. tranches together make up what is referred to as the deal’s capital structure or liability structure. They are generally paid sequentially from the most senior to most subordinate (and generally unsecured)

  • Deez

    Dodgers must of chugged a gallon of “FuckIt” this morning. You gotta have star power to put butts in the seats in L.A. more than you need talent. Plus, money has never been or will ever be a problem in L.A.
    They get a Top Tier 1B to protect Kemp, a still capable pitcher to go w/ Billingsley & Kershaw. Plus, a dynamic leadoff hitter when healthy. Dodgers gets “the names” to put butts in the seats over the next 2 -3 years & become the class of the West. Red Sox get flexibility & prospects to reload.
    I can see the Red Sox going after Cliff Lee or Garza this winter. They have the prospects to do it.

  • TonyP

    Brilliant choice of the picture to go with this post.

  • Doug Dascenzo

    Man, I love that picture of Gary Busey! Hey Brett, I was wondering, if you’d ever consider doing a Photoshop contest or submissions based on an original image or theme, kind of like that “caption” contest. I’m ok at Photoshop and would love to submit something that you could use in the future.

    • Brett

      I would love any and all photoshops. I’m open to ideas, too.

  • ramy16

    Deez i agree to a certain point…but you pay alot of money for these type of players YOU BETTER WIN! Their bull pen is suspect and their starting rotation isnt all that except for Kershaw! Their starting rotation isnt nothing that of the Giants! Cain, Bumgardner, and yes the Freak when hes on! And then Volgasong who to me is better than Billingsley!

    • Deez

      Hopefully, by the end of the weekend, the Dodgers will have a lineup w/ Ethier, Kemp, Gonzalez, Ramirez. What does the Giants have comparable for hitters? At some point, you gotta put up runs & you have to get out of that division. You can not constantly shut out that lineup. I do not see adding Bullpen pieces any problems.
      New Dodgers management with these deals have basically said, “Money ain’t a a thang” & will constantly spend the resources to going for it when they’re in the race.

  • emrac

    wow there is a sucker born every day The Dodgers will regret some of those contracts they took on

  • Tim

    the deal is not official yet

  • ramy16

    Tim ya right! I wonder if Selig would actually approve this deal?

    • Flashfire

      Problem isn’t Selig, problem is that Beckett has 10/5.

  • Featherstone

    I wonder more importantly what happens if the Dodgers fail to make the playoffs this year given they just got swept by SF and they are 2 back in the WC.