There are many teams interested in Justin Upton, including the team he plays for, the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Trade rumors around the multi-talented young all-star have swirled for several weeks as Upton goes through a season that is grossly substandard for him, but a year most players would covet: .276 average with eight home runs and 41 RBI.
Well, anyway, the speculation about him being traded should cease, Diamonbacks’ team president Derrick Hall said.
“(It’s) close to a 100 percent chance nothing happens” with Upton between now and the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, Hall said.
“I would be completely shocked if anything were to happen in-season.”
Which is another way of saying Upton – whose brother B.J. Upton stars for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays – could be traded in the off-season. He is a commodity that can draw back value from around the league.
“You have a better chance of moving a star-caliber player like Justin in the offseason,” Hall said, “when teams know exactly where they finished and where they’re heading, and they can get more creative.
“We’ll field all proposals and conversations. You never know. But I would be surprised if anything happens in the offseason, either.”
Upton, 24, his drawn interest from Toronto, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Texas and Atlanta.
The Diamondbacks have insisted they are not looking to move Upton, twice an all-star who hit 31 home runs and was fourth in National League MVP voting.
“We’re in no hurry to move this guy — nor do we think we need to,” Hall said. “Everybody in this organization is open for discussion and conversation, including Justin Upton. If people call, we’re going to listen. We’ve had a lot of people call, and we’ve said, ‘No, thank you’ to all of them. That hasn’t changed.”
Interestingly, Uptown has a clause in his contract that allows him to block trades to the New York Yanknees, Boston, the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland
Upton, the first overall pick in the 2005 first-year player draft, signed a six-year, $51.25 million contract extension with Arizona in 2010. He’s scheduled to make a total of $38.5 million in the next three seasons.