If You Want A Big Time Player Like Upton You Better Pay Up

An article by posted on July 23, 2012

There are a ton a rumors swirling around regarding Justin Upton. This has led to rampant speculation on whether or not that Mets should be in especially with the Mets’ need for a right-handed bat and the GM’s almost daily reminder that his team will be buyers. That’s all fine and dandy, but one thing we all need to realize is that we have to look at and trade from the Diamondbacks perspective and that if you want Upton it’s going to cost you a lot, and that we would most likely have to part with one or two prospects that you don’t want to lose.

Can you imagine Upton teaming up with Wright to lead this club?

I’ve been reading a lot of hypothetical trades for Upton in comment threads this month, but none of them are very realistic.

Yes, Upton is having a down year this season so far, but that doesn’t mean the D’backs are just going to give him away. Lets not forget that he’s only 24 and will only get better.

The D’backs are not going to trade him to us for a song, they are going to demand a HUGE haul, and I mean huge.

Upton, the former number one overall pick in the 2005 Draft, has shown exceptional speed, above average power and he hasn’t even tapped into his full potential yet.

His career highs coming into this season show everything you need to know about him::

  • Avg: .300
  • OBP: .369
  • HR: 31
  • RBI: 88
  • SB: 21
  • RS: 105
  • WAR 6.4

Not to mention that Upton comes with a team-friendly and very affordable contract that has him locked up through for his talent and is locked up through 2015. He signed a 6-year deal worth $51.25 million in 2010 that will pay him $7 million in 2013, $10 million in 2014 and roughly $15 million in both 2015.

Did I forget to mention he is a right handed bat and plays a solid right field (2009-2012 UZR 25.9)?

Let’s look at one trades I’ve seen discussed:

Familia, Flores and Nieuwenhuis - Not enough and won’t work

Familia is likely a bullpen arm in the future. Flores struggled prior to this season, but still is young and has potential. His resurgence this season should interest teams, but he still isn’t s ure thing and doesn’t even have a natural position. Kirk has some value and could be intriguing to a team, but he is more likely a 4th outfielder or a bottom of the order hitter on a contending team.

If I were dealing Upton and were looking at the Mets farm system, this is what I would demand in a deal.

  1. Wheeler or Harvey, I would insist on Wheeler, settle for Harvey but one of the 2 would have to be in the deal.
  2. Flores
  3. Familia or Fulmer, preferably Fulmer
  4. Den Dekker, Marte, or Nieuwenhuis

That may seem like a lot to you, but if you want a franchise type player who could be a part of your organization for the next 10 years you have to pay big for that. Just look at what the Nationals gave up to acquire Gio Gonzalez. It cost them 3 of their top 10 prospects to land the young lefty. A couple of years ago it took Carlos Gonzalez and Huston Street to get Matt Holliday.

Upton is a great talent and players of his skill set don’t come available very often at such a young age. You want to know why he is worth giving up so much? Just look at our positions players in the Minors and tell me we have anyone even remotely in his league coming through our system. You can’t because we don’t. It’s worth it and Sandy should be at least looking into this.

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