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"Just for 2020, this trade doesn’t make the Red Sox a lot worse. It makes them a little worse, albeit in a range where the marginal wins they’re giving up affect their wild-card chances. It caps their ceiling while saving them perhaps $60 million in salary and tax payments, as well as resetting their penalty structure in future years. The Red Sox only traded 2020 Mookie Betts; they didn’t have the 2021-2028 version. Evaluating this trade as if they did, as if employing that version was simply a matter of choice, is an error."