Could the Chicago White Sox explore Mookie Betts?
The Chicago White Sox are one great offseason away from being a division title contender and pursuing one particular superstar would be huge for the future.
The Chicago White Sox were a much-improved team in 2019 over what they were in 2018. They had amazing years out of Jose Abreu, Tim Anderson, Yoan Moncada, Eloy Jimenez, and James McCann. They have guys like Luis Robert, Andrew Vaughn, and Nick Madrigal in the pipeline who will be impact position players sooner than later. They also have some quality young pitchers in the organization like Lucas Giolito, Michael Kopech, Dylan Cease, and Reynaldo Lopez. There is no doubt that both sides of the ball need some supplementing in order to advance the rebuild.
There is no doubt that they could use some help in right field, and one particular superstar may be available. The Boston Red Sox are reportedly going to be listening to offers on the reigning American League MVP, Mookie Betts. He has a major free agency looming in 2020 and that is an issue as far as Boston is concerned. Betts and the Red Sox won the World Series in 2018, but the 2019 season has been very average and they are not going to the playoffs.
The question is whether or not it would be a wise decision by the Chicago White Sox to pursue Betts. The answer to that question is a definite yes. Betts is in the argument for the second-best player in Major League Baseball. Everyone knows Mike Trout is the best player in the world and possibly ever, but Betts is amazing and would change the fortunes of the White Sox in the present and future if he was acquired.
Over the last five seasons, Betts is second to Trout in fWAR with 35.1. He is batting .301 for his career with 138 home runs. He is the reigning MVP, a four-time Allstar, a three-time gold glove winner, a two-time silver slugger, and has a batting title. He will be entering his age 27 season next year so he still has many more years left in his prime.
In order for the White Sox to be smart for trading for him, they would need to be sure he doesn’t leave in free agency in 2020. He is going to need a very lucrative contract that will definitely be north of 300 million. He is far and away a better baseball player than both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper so you would think he is paid more than them on a contract with lots of term on it. He is on a Hall of Fame trajectory and the White Sox would be so smart to add him to an outfield that will feature Jimenez and Robert.
The White Sox would certainly need to give up a lot to acquire Betts. They have the prospect capital to do it. Robert might even need to be a part of the package or one of Vaughn or Madrigal. The White Sox and Red Sox have made prominent deals in the recent past so maybe they can do it again. They are currently searching for a new GM so things may have to wait for that but you never know.