Originally posted on FOX Sports  |  Last updated 12/4/12
At this point, it will be an upset if the Texas Rangers do not land one of the top two free agents. Could be outfielder Josh Hamilton. Could be right-hander Zack Greinke. Could be neither, likely will not be both. The Rangers are competing for both players, major-league sources say, while also continuing to engage in trade discussions for Arizona right fielder Justin Upton, Tampa Bay right-hander James Shields and others. The team's goal: To land both a star pitcher and a star hitter. Some in the industry believe the Rangers' preference is Greinke, saying that the team president, Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan, always wants a pitcher first. The Los Angeles Dodgers, however, remain the front-runners for Greinke, and are likely to offer the largest financial package, sources say. Greinke, 29, also might prefer to return to the National League rather than pitch in a hitter-friendly park in the AL. But if he chooses the Dodgers, the Rangers will be in position to pivot quickly. The team has made progress with Hamilton, sources say. A deal, if reached, likely would be for four or five years with multiple options. But it is still possible that another team could beat the Texas offer. Hamilton, 31, tweeted a photo Tuesday night of himself and his wife, Katie, leaving the meetings. He and his agents met with the Seattle Mariners in Nashville, sources say, and possibly other clubs as well. If the Rangers sign Hamilton, they likely will increase their efforts to acquire Shields or another pitcher. Their talks with the Rays for Shields are not in an advanced stage, sources say. Upton, meanwhile, also remains an option, but only if the Rangers part with shortstop Elvis Andrus, something they have not yet indicated a willingness to do. The Diamondbacks spoke about Upton with the Rangers, Cleveland Indians and Seattle Mariners on Tuesday, a source told FOXSports.com's Jon Paul Morosi. But the D-backs stand a better chance of trading outfielder Jason Kubel than Upton, another source said. Kubel is under contract for $7.5 million next season with a $7.5 million club option for 2014, making him a bargain considering the way free-agent prices are skyrocketing. The Atlanta Braves recently signed outfielder B.J. Upton to a five-year, $75.25 million deal and the Boston Red Sox reached agreement Tuesday with Shane Victorino on a three-year, $39 million contract. Upton, 25, also is becoming more affordable by the minute -- he is owed $38.5 million over the next three seasons, less than Victorino. The difference: Upton is seven years younger and possesses considerably more upside.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Lane Johnson raises over $100K for Philly schools with 'underdog' shirts

ESPN’s Michelle Beadle blasts ‘obnoxious, misogynist’ LaVar Ball

Tim Tebow invited to major league spring training with Mets

Belichick tight-lipped on Brady injury during press conference

Report: Hornets have made Walker available for trade

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jeff Fisher enjoying success of former QBs Keenum, Foles

Report: Bell skipped most of walk-through before Jags game

Steph Curry wants Giannis on his All-Star team

Jaguars Pro Bowler not buying Tom Brady's hand injury

LeBron doesn't trust Cavs organization after Kyrie trade?

Kiper has Browns drafting Josh Allen No. 1 overall in first mock draft

NFL Championship Weekend Predictions: History will be made in the NFC

Devin Booker is expanding his game beyond getting buckets

Greatest NFL Conference Championship moments ever

Top 10 X-factors for Conference Championship Games

Case Keenum deserves better than the also-ran description

Best performances in the history of NFL Conference Championship games

15 underrated NBA players having tremendous seasons

NFL Referee Hotline Bling: The Saints miss an important long-distance call

10 most surprising college basketball teams

The 'Baby I'm a (All-)Star' quiz

Johnny Gaudreau, Flames hope layoff won't cool them down

Ranking baseball's GMs entering the 2018 season

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 Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

The 'Baby I'm a (All-)Star' quiz

Devin Booker is expanding his game beyond getting buckets

Ranking baseball's GMs entering the 2018 season

NFL Referee Hotline Bling: The Saints miss an important long-distance call

Johnny Gaudreau, Flames hope layoff won't cool them down

The 'Fumble and The Miss' quiz

NFL Championship Weekend Predictions: History will be made in the NFC

Greatest NFL Conference Championship moments ever

The 'All Jolly Rogers at half-mast' quiz

Best players to debut on the 2018 Baseball Hall of Fame ballot

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