Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 11/30/12
PHOENIX The Diamondbacks will be active at the winter meetings; that much is certain. A quick glance at general manager Kevin Towers resume is convincing in itself. The meetings are Towers playground. At the same time, a blockbuster trade involving Justin Upton is not on the table now and would only happen if one of the big-money teams -- Texas still appears to be the most logical trading partner -- comes off its current offer in order to acquire a big bat, according to a source with knowledge of the D-backs situation. Its possible. It depends how desperate teams get, the source said of an Upton deal. Barring that, expect the D-backs to return from the meetings in Nashville., Tenn., with Upton in the middle of the order and: a role player with some pop in his bat to back up both first base and third base, likely a left-handed hitter since both Paul Goldschmidt and Chris Johnson are right-handed, and probably a free agent. another left-hander to join newcomer Matt Reynolds in the bullpen, probably through a trade. a starting pitcher for the middle of the rotation. A No. 1 starter almost certainly would cost Upton, and there are few of those on the market. The D-backs have a lot of good young pitchers, though, and could swap two for a Trevor Cahill type to a team seeking salary relief. possible additions at third base or shortstop. Weve targeted a handful of teams that may be potential trade partners, Towers said. Wed like to improve our bench, and well look at free agents more than trades for that. At least 10 teams have expressed interest in Upton, but after initial conversations, the D-backs have told most that there is no fit. They appear to want a young major league (or major league-ready) shortstopthird baseman and a top-of-the-rotation starter. Atlanta shortstop Andrelton Simmons, one potential target, has not been available, and the Braves eventually turned to the elder Upton outfielder, Tampa Bay free agent B.J., who signed a five-year, 75 million deal Thursday. Texas has not made top prospect Jurickson Profar available, and Tampa Bay does not have a shortstop the D-backs appear to be wild about, although the Rays do have an excess of starting pitching. AL Cy Young winner David Price is said not to be on the market even though he could make about 9 million in arbitration this season and has one more year of arbitration remaining. Jeremy Hellickson could make sense in a package for the D-backs, but probably not at a cost of Upton. Any possible Upton deal also would require some sell within the organization. Manager Kirk Gibson is a strong supporter of Upton even though the two had their differences when Gibson put a struggling Upton on the bench for a few days in June. Managing partner Ken Kendrick also is a big Upton booster. Although the D-backs would save 38.5 million on the final three years of Uptons contract, money does not appear to be a large determinant regarding moves they might make in Nashville or after. The D-backs went over budget to spend about 80 million on player salaries last season, and they have a soft target of about 85 million for payroll this season, in part after drawing their biggest attendance figure in four years in 2012. The D-backs have about 70 million committed now, a figure that includes approximations on their seven arbitration-eligible players, a group that includes Johnson, Ian Kennedy, Gerardo Parra, Cliff Pennington and Brad Ziegler. The D-backs appear to have an excess of outfielders even after trading Chris Young to Oakland in the three-way deal that brought Heath Bell from Miami on Nov. 20. As with Upton, both Parra and Jason Kubel have been mentioned in trade speculation. Adam Eaton and A.J. Pollock are the others in the crowded field. Eaton and Pollock have options remaining. I wouldnt say its a priority, Towers said of dealing an outfielder. We have four really good ones and one (Pollock) that is ready to play as well. It would be nice to find a bench player at first and third, hopefully a left-handed bat, who could give us coverage when 'Goldy' or Chris need a day off. The free-agent market for combo first and third baseman appears relatively thin. Eric Chavez, principally a third baseman, played a smattering of first base with the Yankees the last two seasons. He had 16 homers in 278 at-bats last season. Aubrey Huff spent most of the last three seasons at first base for San Francisco and has played 360 career games at third, but none since leaving Baltimore in 2008. Left-hander Clayton Richard and right-handers Justin Masterson and Ricky Nolasco are among the small-market starting pitchers who are first-time arbitration eligible this winter and in line for a big raise, although the Padres are not expected to move Richard. NOTES: The D-backs designated left-hander Mike Zagurski and right-hander Brad Bergesen for assignment, leaving their 40-man roster frozen at 36 for the Rule 5 draft on Thursday, the last item of business at the winter meetings. The D-backs have taken a player in each of Towers two seasons Joe Paterson in 2010 and right-hander Brett Lorin in 2011 and are likely to be active in that market. A player claimed in the major league phase of the Rule 5 draft must make the claiming teams 25-man roster in 2013 or be offered back to his previous team. Follow Jack Magruder on Twitter
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Craig Sager to receive Jimmy V Award for Perseverance

Tracy McGrady jokes: ‘If Bradley Beal is a max player, I’m coming back’

The spectacular nonsense of Cavs, Raptors

Report: Ronald Leary requests trade from Cowboys

Pacers reportedly interested in hiring Nick Van Exel as assistant coach


How Alex Rodriguez’s injury has helped the New York Yankees

Report: Baylor fires president amid ongoing sexual assault scandal

Report: Titans OL Byron Bell to miss season with ankle injury

Sanchez surprises all, starts OTAs with Broncos 1st team

Le'Veon Bell: Bengals, other teams try to injure me

Report: Tyler Eifert needs ankle surgery, out three months

Charles Barkley: 'I’ve never seen the NBA as bad as it is'

NFL owners vote to tweak instant replay for 2016 season

Is Kris Bryant becoming an elite defender?

Over half of Finland watched the World Championship gold medal game

Dikembe Mutombo didn’t give Bismark Biyombo permission for finger wag

Mark Davis: Move to Las Vegas would ‘unite the Raider nation’

Spanish Olympic sailors assaulted in Rio de Janeiro

Twins announcer Dick Bremer confronted by player for negative commentary

Eddie Lacy not yet at target weight for Packers

Three possible destinations for Rick Nash

Super Bowl locations through 2021 announced at 2016 NFL Spring Meeting

Tom Brady receives support from science professors in Deflategate fight

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.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The five most disappointing MLB teams this season

QUIZ: Identify these NHL Hall of Famers by their nicknames

QUIZ: Name every winner of the Belmont Stakes since 1867

Sniping quotes highlight NHL conference finals animosity

QUIZ: Name every NBA franchise's original incarnation

The 15 biggest playoff upsets in NBA history

Cy Young Award contenders at the quarter mark of the season

QUIZ: Name the NHL franchises that have never won the Stanley Cup

How the goalies stack up in the Stanley Cup Conference Finals

Ranking the four potential NBA Finals matchups

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker