FORT MYERS, Fla. — At last, the Red Sox’ long national nightmare is over.
Six days after news first broke of a Mookie Betts trade to the Dodgers — with the time in between filled with fan backlash and reports over the original deal falling apart because of medical reviews — a reworked version finally became official Monday night. The Red Sox dealt Betts, their homegrown star who has become one of the best players in baseball, David Price and cash considerations to the Dodgers for young outfielder Alex Verdugo and prospects Jeter Downs, an infielder, and Connor Wong, a catcher.
“We knew it would hurt, and it’s going to hurt for a little while,” chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom said Monday night at Fenway South, less than 48 hours before the first workout for pitchers and catchers at spring training. “As difficult as it was, and as difficult as it continues to be emotionally, we felt that where this trade positions us in terms of the big picture, in terms of our long-term future, was a large enough step forward that despite being difficult, it was something we needed to do.”
The Red Sox entered the offseason hoping to get under the luxury-tax threshold…