A couple of days ago I pondered the wisdom of the Mets pursuing Justin Upton after coming across the post below from Bob Nightengale.
Well what first seemed like just a rumor or speculation, has now grown into a MLB-wide hysteria as there’s no shortage of offers being tossed around complete with quotes from several general managers including one from Kevin Towers who not only confirms that he could trade Upton, but even leaked it would take 4-5 prospects with three of them being close to major league ready.
The Rockies, Blue Jays, Marlins and Red Sox appear to be just some of the teams that are definitely interested, and you can never count the Yankees out when a talent like this becomes available.
Matt Cerrone of MetsBlog believes it would take the Mets Mike Pelfrey and Ike Davis and even more to land the suddenly very popular right fielder, but I completely disagree.
If the D-Backs are looking for 4-5 prospects, 3 of whom are major league ready, it would seem to me that both Pelfrey and Davis are a bit overqualified for that tag.
Here is how I would play it. To get this done and grab the D’Backs’ attention you have to begin with two big names from the Mets farm system, the first being top hitting prospect Wilmer Flores, and the other is top pitching prospect Jenrry Mejia. Those two would be the foundation of any offer for Justin Upton. But that’s not all…
The other players to complete the package would go one of the following ways:
Group A (Choose two players) - Daniel Murphy, Fernando Martinez, Dillon Gee, Lucas Duda, Ruben Tejada
Group B (Choose three players) – Brad Holt, Nick Evans, Tobi Stoner, Jefry Marte, Josh Stinson
A package like that not only would look attractive to the Diamondbacks, but wouldn’t bankrupt the Mets in the long run either.
Anyway, that’s how I see it. What are your thoughts?
Original Post 11/16 2:30 PM
Bob Nightengale of USA Today posted an All Star list of players whose names are being tossed around in Orlando, the site of this weeks GM Meetings.
GMs say the biggest names already under discussion include former Cy Young winner Zack Grienke of Kansas City; All-Star first basemen Adrian Gonzalez of San Diego and Prince Fielder of Milwaukee; outfield brothers Justin Upton of Arizona and B.J. Upton of Tampa Bay; All-Star right fielder Nick Swisher of the New York Yankees; All-Star closers Bobby Jenks of the Chicago White Sox and Jonathan Papelbon of Boston; and infielders Dan Uggla of Florida; Jason Bartlett of Tampa Bay and Mark Reynolds of Arizona.
“I’m open to listening on anybody,” Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers said. “We got more hits on Upton and [Stephen] Drew. They’re difficult to move, but sometimes to make your club better, you have to move good players. You never know when a deal might present itself.”
Some of those names like Adrian Gonzalez, Zach Grienke and Prince Fielder, have been the subject of trade rumors before, but the Upton brothers add some pizazz to the speculation as do Jenks and Papelbon for teams that are searching for saves.
The only one that interests me is the younger of the Upton’s, Justin of the Arizona Diamondbacks. What’s not to like right?
The 23-year old is already regarded as one of the best young players in the game and he still oozes with upside and potential.
Upton had a solid season in 2010 although not as good as 2009. He batted .276 with a .356 OBP and .799 OPS (.899 OPS in ’09). He gives you a nice blend of power, 17 home runs, and speed, 18 stolen bases.
I really don’t understand why Towers would want to move a player as special as Justin Upton other than to somehow reshape the team his way and get a boatload of players back.
Given Towers’ relationship with Sandy Alderson, there is a strong possibility that the two of them might be able to work something out that can help each of them put their own stamp on their new teams.
Justin Upton would certainly do that for the Mets, but who would the Mets send to Arizona in return?