The time Red Sox resisted trading Rafael Devers

Rob Bradford
August 16, 2019 - 9:20 am

Rafael Devers has become one of the best hitters in the major leagues this season. Thanks to some hard-line trade talk by Dave Dombrowski a few years ago the third baseman is doing his thing as a member of the Red Sox.

Talking to John Tomase of NBC Sports Boston, Dombrowski explained how Devers was a central piece in the Chris Sale trade discussions with the White Sox.

"When they got into the Devers part of it, at that point, we were prepared to walk away," Dombrowski told Tomase when reflecting on his dealings with the White Sox prior to the 2017 season.

The key players Chicago's general manager Rick Hahn was asking for in a deal for Sale were pitcher Michael Kopech and either Yoan Moncada or Andrew Benintendi. Then came another name: Devers.

"We were already giving up Moncada or Benintendi and Kopech," Dombrowski said. "We knew that they liked those other guys so much, and we kept weighing it in or our mind and kept saying if you have one of those two guys and Kopech, we didn't think anyone could realistically match that deal. So we told them at that point we were not going to give up Devers. And then they came back to us with a couple of other names."

Ultimately the trade included minor-leaguers Luis Alexander Basabe and Victor Diaz instead of Devers.

Devers' numbers have jumped out this season with the 22-year-old integrating himself into the American League MVP conversation. But Moncada also has had a breakout year, hitting .301 with 20 homers and a .893 OPS. Kopech is coming back from Tommy John surgery.