Justin Upton to the Blue Jays?

This discussion continues to rear its head in game threads, fan posts, twitter and every discussion on possible trade targets. Therefore I thought I would take this opportunity to write my first fan post and create a thread for solving this particular dilemma. Hopefully by creating this post we can look not just at the potential players involved in the package, but more of the organizational impacts both short and long term of this potential move. First let’s look at Upton himself.

With 5 seasons of major league experience Justin Upton has a career line of .276/.356/.430 with a wOBA of .358 98 HR, 72 SB, a BB% of 10, k% of 27 and has contributed 15.6 fWAR to the Diamondbacks.

2011 was his best year with a line of .289/.369/.529 with 31 HR, 22 SB, a wOBA of .376 and contributed 6.4 fWar. He is currently on a down year with a line of .267/.350/.384 with just 7 HR, 10 SB and a wOBA of .317. The rumours are that he has lost some favour with Arizona fans and management which makes him a prime Alex A target.

He has a team friendly contract that breaks down as follows:

2012 - $6.75M, 2013: $9.75M, 2014: $14.25M, 2015: $14.5M

So overall, he would be a definite upgrade over Rajai Davis, but there will no doubt be many offers for this outfielder if he truly is available. Determining what it would take to get a deal done for this player would be an endless and fun debate (which is one of the reasons for creating this post). However, let’s assume that AA works his magic and gets a deal done that looks something like this:

To Arizona:

- 1 of Davis or Snider

- 1 of Marisnik, Gose or Sierra

- 1 of Escobar or Hecheveria (Willie Bloomquist is 35, they need a SS moving forward)

- 1 Single A pitching prospect (hopefully not Syndegard or Nicolino but . . .)

- Yan Gomes (What NL team doesn’t want the positional flexibility he offers)

- Maybe there is more low A or midlevel prospects but this is the bulk of the deal

To Toronto:

- Justin Upton

- Jacob Elmore (25 year old 2nd Baseman currently in the PCL blocked by Hill with a line of .387/.466/.526, wOBA of .445 and wRC+ pf 166 with 25 SB, a 12.6% BB rate and 8.2% K rate. He’d be worth the audition given KJ’s contract status and performance, and might even make KJ a trade piece to a contender)

- Ryan Wheeler (23 year old Right Handed, Power Hitting 1st baseman in the PCL blocked by Goldschmidt with a line of .356/.394/.571, wOBA of .413, wRC+ of 145 and 13 HR in 82 Games. Worth a shot if Lind isn’t really back, could be a trade chip, has also played 3rd and OF so could be a solid platoon/day off utility player.)

So here is where the endless stream of comments begins telling me that this deal wouldn’t get it done, or it’s too much. So question 1:

Would this get the deal done? If not, what would need to change? Would you make this trade? Given our current needs, is this the best use of our resources to improve our team in the short and long term? (After all we didn’t get any pitching)

Other things to consider, we all agree that we would like Alex to re-sign Edwin and get a strong veteran pitcher in the off-season. I was already skeptical that Rogers would pony up the 3/$30M and 5/$75-$100M it takes to get this done. The additional $25-$30M a year would be a 40% increase in the payroll as it is. I can’t help but wonder what effect taking on the reaming 3 years and $40 million of Upton’s contract (as good value as it may be) would have on Roger’s "payroll parameters" and the ability to improve other aspects of the team in the offseason. Therefore:

What effect do you think taking on Upton’s contract would have on other moves within the organization? Is it worth the sacrifice?

There you have it, hopefully this post will give all us fans the opportunity to make this decision on Alex A’s behalf. Please feel free to challenge my logic, knowledge or otherwise take your shots at the newbie.

Go Jays Go!

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