Chicago Cubs: J.D. Martinez may have just forced a Mookie Betts trade

(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Cubs
(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

By opting in to the final years of his deal with Boston, J.D. Martinez may have all but guaranteed a trade of Mookie Betts. Don’t expect the Chicago Cubs to be in on either of the team’s star outfielders.

A mere 12 months ago, J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts were celebrating bringing the Boston Red Sox their fourth World Series title of the century. But after finishing this year at just 84-78, coincidentally the same record as the Chicago Cubs, and missing the postseason, it’s shaping up to be a very different offseason this time around.

On Monday, Martinez officially opted into the final three years and $62.5 million of his deal with the Red Sox – setting up a potential payroll crunch in Boston. The club seems ready to shed some payroll in the coming months after trotting out a franchise record $229 million figure this season.

They’ve certainly got plenty of ways to do so – but a lot of those options will be uncomfortable for fans, namely trading the reigning American League MVP Mookie Betts. Recently, I talked about how a Betts trade would be an unexpected move for the Cubs – especially given recent comments from ownership. 

But aside from a potential deal, Chicago and Boston seem to share a lot of similarities this winter. They, by all indications, plan on contending in 2020 – but have an eye on payroll and not spending lavishly, despite being in the midst of competitive windows. What does that mean for each team as the offseason begins?