Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/8/12
This past July, I wrote about the Detroit Tigers and the potential that they might trade for Justin Upton prior to the deadline. Click here to read that story again. Instead, the Tigers grabbed Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante to fill out their pre-August wish list. But back to Upton, other than the month on the calendar, little has changed. Perhaps most notable from that piece back in July was this nugget: During ’11 Upton hit .289 with 31 homers, 39 doubles, 88 RBI’s, and 21 steals. So far in 2012 his numbers are depressed (.267, 7 HR, 10 doubles, 36 RBI’s) and he doesn’t seem to be jiving with the powers that be in AZ. Could Justin Upton be taking his hacks in Detroit next summer? Upton fought an AC joint injury in his shoulder and was simply unable to put up an elite season in 2012. And that is now his burden. He is expected to be elite year in and year out. After struggling for much of the season’s first 4 months, Upton hit .290 in August and .301 in September, swatting 9 of his 17 total homers during that 2-month stretch. Overall, Upton finished the season at .280 with 17 homers, 67 RBI’s, 18 steals, and a .355 on-base %. Despite his strong finish, the Arizona Diamondbacks seem intent on listening to Upton-related trade offers this winter. His season-ending stats certainly aren’t numbers to shake a stick at, but also not of the MVP-caliber type that has come to be expected of the 25-year old outfielder. Contractually, Upton is signed through 2015 at a reasonable fare. His next 3 years line up like this: 2013: $9,958,000 2014: $14,458,000 2015: $14,708,000 In other words, for about the same cost that the Tigers were willing to pay Jose Valverde in 2012, they could have Upton in 2013. If Upton did indeed come to Detroit (and Detroit has been doing their research on him this offseason), the Tigers do have some pieces that are moveable. And after recently trading Chris Young away from their outfield, the D-backs could use some of the help the Tigers have available. Most notable among the available names would be Brennan Boesch, Andy Dirks, and Quintin Berry. Upton is an everyday player. So is Austin Jackson. That doesn’t leave room for a load of outfielders on the roster, especially with Avisail Garcia and Nick Castellanos (both slated to play corner outfield) pounding on the Major League door. If Detroit does happen to retain Anibal Sanchez’s services, then they would most certainly have a starting pitching piece to move as well. Adding a Rick Porcello or Drew Smyly to the deal along with a big league-ready outfielder might be enough, along with some other ancillary pieces, to get a deal done. Heck, Garcia and Castellanos themselves may be considered in a trade of this magnitude. From a Tigers perspective, an ideal outfield in 2013 might look like Dirks-Jackson-Upton from left to right. Upton is a middle of the order thumper who can also swipe 20 bags over the course of a season. If Detroit was able to package up Boesch and Smyly or Porcello, then a 2013 opening day lineup might look something like this: Jackson – CF Dirks – LF Cabrera – 3B Fielder – 1B Martinez – DH Upton – RF Peralta – SS Avila – C Infante 2B That is the kind of lineup that would finish in the top 5 of most major offensive categories. Watch this situation closely. Grabbing a 25-year old riser like Upton, without breaking the bank, seems to fit right into GM Dave Dombrowski’s wheelhouse. [Follow me on Twitter @isportsJoe or subscribe to our Detroit Tigers Feed]

This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Florida's Chiozza sends Wisconsin home on incredible buzzer-beater

LaVar Ball gets Crying Jordan, meme treatment after UCLA loss

Celtics upset Suns tried to pad Devin Booker’s stats

Five teams that may be interested in Blake Griffin this summer

Report: Tony Romo ‘believes it’s Texans or retirement’

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Clay Matthews Sr. passes away at 88

WWE’s Kane is inching toward running for mayor in Tennessee

Jung Ho Kang denied visa for DUI, may miss 2017 MLB season

Jets not ready to say Josh McCown will be starter

Sens owner on Sidney Crosby: He’s 'a whiner' and should be suspended for Methot slash

Report: Griffin could be growing more open to leaving Clippers

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Box Score 3/24: Waiting on West Virginia

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

With Team USA's victory, World Baseball Classic (finally) lived up to its potential

The NFL distraction playbook

Which Sweet 16 team should you be rooting for?

The Aesthetic: The world of player exclusive sneakers

Lingering issues for each 2016 MLB postseason team

Box Score 3/23: Team USA wins their first WBC title

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

The 'Once again, Barry Bonds is the best power hitter in San Francisco' quiz

The NFL distraction playbook

With Team USA's victory the WBC (finally) lived up to its potential

The Aesthetic: The world of player exclusive sneakers

Which Sweet 16 team should you be rooting for?

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Steph Curry pushes OKC's buttons

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker