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Report: New York Mets Re-Open Trade Talks for Justin Upton

January 12th, 2013 at 8:17 AM
By Mike Phillips

The New York Mets still have gigantic holes to fill in their outfield, but they have remained surprisingly quiet on that front in free agency. With most of the big name free agents already having found new homes, the Mets have turned to the trade market to try and fill their outfield needs. One team that could help them out is the Arizona Diamondbacks, who have a surplus of outfielders and are trying to find playing time for top prospect Adam Eaton. The Mets have talked trade with Arizona before concerning outfielder Justin Upton and have re-engaged in talks recently, Marc Carig of Newsday reports. Upton, 25, batted .280 with 17 home runs and 68 RBI's last season to go along with 18 stolen bases. Upton would be a perfect fit for the Mets outfield, as he is a young righty with power in a group that currently projects to have three left handed starters (Lucas Duda, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, and Mike Baxter). 

'Justin Upton evades the tag by Josh Bard' photo (c) 2007, SD Dirk - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Upton, who is signed through 2015, would command a lot in a trade due to his age and combination of power and speed potential. Upton also has a no trade clause in his contract and recently used it to turn down a trade to the Seattle Mariners. The deal would have netted Arizona a haul of prospects, led by two top pitching prospects. If the Diamondbacks were to expect a similar return from the Mets, the asking price would likely start with Matt Harvey and Zack Wheeler, who are off the table from the Mets' perspective. The Mets are expected to take a slow approach to the trade talks as the relationship between Upton and Arizona is deteoriorating and could lead to a drop in price by spring training. There is also a question of what prospects the Mets would be willing to part with to form a competitive package, as GM Sandy Alderson seems focused on revitalizing the farm system before committing its resources for a big trade at the major league level. Carig speculates that one name who could eventually get included in trade talks is Wilmer Flores, a power hitting infield prospect who is blocked at the big league level for the Mets by Ike Davis and David Wright. Another name to keep an eye could be a lesser pitching prospect, such as recently acquired Noah Syndergaard or Jeurys Familia. Stay tuned to Mets 101 as we will keep you updated on the Upton trade talks throughout the offseason. 

Tags: Arizona Diamondbacks, Baseball, Justin Upton, MLB, New York, New York Mets

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