Buster Olney of ESPN.com reported that the Tampa Bay Rays will “probably” trade B.J. Upton over the offseason. The Rays came close to dealing their center fielder to the Washington Nationals prior to the trade deadline, but weren’t able to agree on the pieces before time ran out.
Upton made $4.825 million in 2011 and is due for a raise in what will be his final year of arbitration. The Rays currently have Desmond Jennings waiting in the wings and they believe he is ready to take over in center field.
At 27 years old, Upton still has loads of potential and he did hit 23 home runs and drove in 81 runs, but also batted .243 and struck out 161 times in the process.
Another option that has emerged is Cleveland Indians’ center fielder Grady Sizemore. Yesterday, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reported that the Indians are expected to decline Sizemore’s $8.5 million dollar option for 2012.
Sizemore, 28, had micro-fracture surgery on his left knee in 2010 which required him to miss half of the 2010 and 2011 season, and recently underwent more surgery on the same knee, but is expected to be ready for Spring Training. In 268 at-bats this season he batted .224 with ten home runs and 30 RBIs.
Both players certainly have their own unique issues, but might still prove to be an upgrade over Angel Pagan who could get almost $5 million dollars in arbitration this Winter.
Sizemore will cost the Mets only money, while of course Upton will cost both player and money. Would either of them be worth the risk?