Chris Sale has allowed two runs in 142/3 innings. So far, it looks like he’s worth the high cost it took to acquire him.
Much was made about bundle of players Boston gave up to entice the White Sox to trade Sale. The price was four prospects, topped by Yoan Moncada.
Red Sox President Dave Dombrowski has not been shy about trading prospects. In the 20 months since he took over, he has traded 16 minor leaguers and two major leaguers.
So, before our farm report begins tracking current Red Sox prospects, let’s check the status of those dealt away.
Of the traded minor leaguers, one is in the majors. Outfielder Manuel Margot may become a National League Rookie of the Year candidate, leading off for the Padres. He’s known for his speed, but he hit his first two major league home runs Friday.
Margot was part of a four-prospect package to land closer Craig Kimbrel before the 2016 season.
While Margot was tough to give up, Boston was awash in outfielders. Plus, the Red Sox desperately needed a closer.
In the Sale trade, Moncada was the big-name prospect. He’s off to a fast start in Triple-A Charlotte, batting .400 with a .979 OPS. But those who have watched Moncada, including his time in Portland last year, want to know the splits.
Sure enough, Moncada is tearing it up left-handed (8 for 13 with a home run). Batting right-handed, Moncada is 0 for 7 with three strikeouts. That’s consistent with what he showed in Portland and Boston.
The other top prospect in the Sale deal was right-handed pitcher Michael Kopech, he of the 100 mph fastballs. Kopech made his Double-A debut last week and struck out 10 in 41/3 innings. He gave up two runs on three hits and two walks.
Outfielder Luis Alexander Basabe (1 for 13 in high Class A) and pitcher Victor Diaz (on the disabled list in low Class A) also went to the White Sox.
The Kimbrel trade included second baseman Carlos Asuaje (in Triple-A), shortstop Javier Guerra (high Class A) and pitcher Logan Allen (low A).
Guerra, 21, was supposed to be an up-and-comer, but he hit .202 in the hitter-friendly California League last year and is back there again (2 for 17 so far).
Dombrowski made two other significant deals, including the trade for Drew Pomeranz last July. Pomeranz was an All-Star for San Diego, and Dombrowski gave up Anderson Espinoza, one of the top pitching prospects in baseball.
Pomeranz had a 2.47 ERA in San Diego that ballooned to 4.59 with Boston. Espinoza, who just turned 19 last month, is on the disabled list because of forearm tightness (as reported by the Boston Globe’s Alex Speier).
On the morning of the Sale trade last December, Dombrowski sent major leaguer Travis Shaw and prospects Mauricio Dubon and Josh Pennington to Milwaukee for set-up reliever Tyler Thornburg.
While Thornburg has yet to pitch because of a sore shoulder, Shaw is batting .280 with a .979 OPS for the Brewers. Dubon, 22, who ended last year with Portland, is still in Double-A, assigned to the Biloxi (Mississippi) Shuckers. Pennington, 21, is in low Class A.
To get reliever Carson Smith from the Mariners before the 2016 season, Dombrowski traded major league pitcher Wade Miley and Triple-A reliever Jonathan Aro.
Boston not only got Smith (who underwent Tommy John surgery last year and might be back by June), but also lefty Roenis Elias (headed to Pawtucket when he gets off the disabled list). Seattle traded Miley to Baltimore and still has Aro in the minors.
The Red Sox still have lefty reliever Fernando Abad, whom they got from Minnesota last year for reliever Pat Light. The Twins traded Light to the Pirates, who have him in Triple-A.
Dombrowski made two trades to bolster the roster for the playoff run last year, sending pitcher Aaron Wilkerson and infielder Wendell Rijo to Milwaukee for Aaron Hill; and second baseman Luis Alejandro Basabe (Luis Alexander’s brother) and pitcher Jose Almonte to Arizona for Brad Ziegler.
Both Hill and Ziegler have moved on. Wilkerson is in Double-A and Rijo in high A for the Brewers. Almonte is in high A and Basabe is in low A for the Diamondbacks.
Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or: