After an offseason full of trade rumors, Andrew Benintendi knows for sure that he will no longer be a member of the Boston Red Sox.
The former American League Rookie of the Year runner-up is on the move as the Red Sox have agreed to a three-team trade, with the outfielder Benintendi being dealt to the Kansas City Royals, according to multiple reports Wednesday night.
In exchange, the Royals will reportedly ship outfielder Franchy Cordero to Boston, in addition to trading outfield prospect Khalil Lee to the New York Mets. MLB Network also reports that the Mets will move right-hander Josh Winckowski to Boston as part of the maneuver. Other players to be named may also be part of the trade, per reports.
The headliner is Boston’s trade of Benintendi, 26, who once was considered one of the more up-and-coming players in baseball. He finished second to the New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge in the AL Rookie of the Year race in 2017, thanks to a sterling full-season debut (20 home runs, 90 RBIs , 20 stolen bases) after playing 34 games in 2016.
Benintendi set career highs in batting average (.290), steals (21) and doubles (41) in 2018 among several other categories while helping the Red Sox to a World Series title. After hitting 16 homers with 87 RBIs in that title-winning campaign, the left-handed hitter has hit just 13 long balls in the past two seasons since. The shortened 2020 season was a disaster for Benintendi, who hit just .103 with no home runs and a single RBI in 52 plate appearances — finally being shelved late in the year with a rib-cage injury.
Cordero, 26, has played in parts of four seasons after making his big league debut in 2017 with the San Diego Padres, where he played for three seasons until being dealt to the Royals in 2020. Known for his prodigious power, he has hit 12 home runs with 36 RBIs and a .236/.304/.433 line in 95 career games and 315 trips to the plate.
Lee, 22, was originally a third-round pick by the Royals in 2016. Known for his speed, he racked up 53 stolen bases while hitting .264 with eight homers and 51 RBIs in 129 games with AA Northwest Arkansas in 2019 — his last minor league action with the 2020 minor league season canceled over COVID-19 concerns.
Winckowski, 22, was a 15th-round pick by Toronto in 2016 and is 18-17 in his minor league career since 2016, with 237 strikeouts in 263 innings pitched over 54 games (50 starts). He has not yet pitched past the Class-A level.
–Field Level Media