— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 6, 2016
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) December 6, 2016
?? let's go to work!
— Blake Aubry Swihart (@BLAKESWIHART_1) December 6, 2016
Move over David Price, the Boston Red Sox have found their true ace and his name is Christopher Allen Sale. Every team has their best pitcher and who they recognize as an ace, but Sale is one of the few pitchers in baseball who walks into most teams and immediately adopts the ace status.
Ever since 2012, Sale has been one of the most dominant and devastating pitchers, proven with his five All-Star selections and his four top-five Cy Young finishes. It goes without saying how dangerous this guy is, and he will now enter a rotation that already consists of David Price and 2016 Cy Young winner Rick Porcello. This move will scare the rest of the league shitless as this puts Boston as heavy favorites to be the best team in the American League next year.
Of course a lot of people are wondering why Sale is now a member of the Red Sox in the off-season as opposed to the All-Star break. The answer is very simple. The White Sox wanted Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi and I hope Dave Dombrowski put the phone down straight away. I rate Sale very highly but no way am I giving up one of the best young talents in baseball as well as a potential future superstar. Sure, it would have been nice and it just might have given David Ortiz a fourth ring in his final season, but in the long term it would have absolutely killed the Red Sox so it was wise to wait until now.
However, to acquire a stud like Sale, you do need to part ways with the very best in your farm system. Yoan Moncada, who is ranked as baseball’s number one prospect, will be packing his bags for the Windy City along with three other prospects, one of whom is also rated very highly by the Red Sox.
Moncada signed with the Sox in February 2015 with a reported signing bonus of $31.5 million from Cuba, and for the next two years he proved why the Red Sox had been so desperate to get him. Described as a switch-hitting Robinson Cano with speed (pretty good), he made his MLB debut on September 2nd against Oakland and showed off his arm by throwing an absolute laser to first base. His bat wasn’t exactly pretty in his short stint in the big leagues as he had 12 strikeouts in just 20 plate appearances. It’s a shame to lose a guy like Moncada because he did look like he had a serious amount of talent but if I had a dollar for every time someone told me that a prospect was going to be a superstar, I wouldn’t need to be sitting here writing this.
The other name that the Sox gave up was RHP Michael Kopech, who has absolutely blistering stuff. Let’s just get that out the way. He throws in the triple digits and he reportedly threw 105 earlier this year although that has never been verified. Much like Moncada, Kopech also succeeded at the minor league level and was just recently named one of the Arizona Fall League’s top prospects. Kopech however, has attracted a certain bit of controversy in his short career when it was announced he was suspended 50 games for testing positive for a banned substance. Nine months later, he broke his hand after getting into an altercation with a roommate. Nothing more has came out regarding Kopech’s attitude and behavior so I assume he has managed to calm himself down, but he looks like a talented young pitcher (see above).
All in all, I think this is a smart trade and the right decision as it gives Boston the best chance at winning with a superstar like Sale in the rotation. Screw the Yankees and their young core, the world’s best hitting team now has the world’s best rotation.
Follow Jack Senior on Twitter @JTFS_