MLB players union upset at delay in Mookie Betts trade to the Dodgers

Tony Clark
Tony Clark, executive director of the MLB players union, is upset by the delay in the trades involving the Dodgers, Angels, Boston Red Sox and Minnesota Twins.
(Mary Altaffer / Associated Press)

As the Dodgers, Angels and two other teams slogged through a fourth day of trying to conclude two trades that would enable the Dodgers to land star outfielder Mookie Betts, the chief of the players union demanded Friday that the situation be resolved promptly to free the players involved from “a state of limbo.”

“The proposed trades between the Dodgers, Red Sox, Twins and Angels need to be resolved without further delay,” said Tony Clark, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Assn.

“The events of this last week have unfairly put several players’ lives in a state of limbo. The unethical leaking of medical information as well as the perversion of the salary arbitration process serve as continued reminders that too often players are treated as commodities by those running the game.”

On Tuesday, the Dodgers, Boston Red Sox and Minnesota Twins agreed on a three-way trade that would send Betts and pitcher David Price from the Red Sox to the Dodgers, pitcher Kenta Maeda from the Dodgers to the Twins, and Dodgers outfielder Alex Verdugo and Twins pitching prospect Brusdar Graterol to the Red Sox.


In a separate deal, one that could allow the Dodgers to avoid paying a luxury tax this year, the Dodgers agreed to trade outfielder Joc Pederson and pitcher Ross Stripling to the Angels for infielder Luis Rengifo. The teams also would exchange minor leaguers as part of the deal.

However, the Red Sox expressed concern after receiving medical information about Graterol, and they are trying to negotiate for additional compensation. That has held up the trades — and, in the interim, forced Pederson to endure an arbitration hearing against a team that has agreed to trade him. He lost the hearing and will be paid $7.75 million in 2020 rather than the $9.5 million he had sought.

As of Friday afternoon, it is unclear how — or when — the teams might resolve the situation. Spring training camps open next week.

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