Superstar first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, a 28-year-old who had a .573 slugging percentage outside of Petco Park last season, will be wearing a Red Sox uniform in 2011 (and likely for the next several seasons after that).
In exchange for the heavy hitter, the Sox give up three prospects: 1B Anthony Rizzo, SP Casey Kelly, and OF Reymond Fuentes. While most consider Kelly to be the best prospect in this group, the guy I consider most valuable is Rizzo. Back in September, I ranked these guys #3, #5, and #17 in the organization, respectively.
The Sox actually gave up less than I thought they would, and I’m pleasantly surprised they were able to hang on to shortstop Jose Iglesias.
My initial reaction to this deal is extreme optimism and exuberance. They did give up some quality prospects that could have great careers in San Diego, but Gonzalez is one of the top hitters in the game. The last time I was this excited over an acquisition was in the winter of 2000, when the team signed a certain free agent left fielder. Gonzalez has the potential to put up similar numbers in Fenway Park.
We’ll take a closer look at Gonzalez on Monday morning.