Arizona’s Upton Blocks Trade to Seattle

 

Arizona Diamondbacks Justin Upton likes it just fine in Arizona. According to various news reports, the outfielder used the no-trade clause in his contract to block a proposed trade to the Seattle Mariners.

Upton’s decision was first reported by Foxsports.com and confirmed by the Arizona Republic.  Seattle was ready to give up a “substantial package” in exchange for the outfielder. Rumored to have been included in the deal are relievers Charlie Furbush and Stephen Pryor, minor-league shortstop Nick Franklin and, one of three minor-league starting pitching prospects: Right-hander Taijuan Walker, lefty James Paxton or lefty Danny Hultzen.

Arizona general manager Kevin Towers has had Upton on the block throughout the offseason. Upton, 25, is a two-time All-Star and finished fourth in the National League MVP balloting in 2011.

Seattle ranked last in the American League in runs scored and team OPS last year, and general manager Jack Zduriencik has made upgrading the offense a priority this off-season. He acquired Jason Bay and Raul Ibanez via free agency and obtained Kendrys Morales in a trade with the Los Angeles Angels.

Unfortunately for the Mariners, they were one of four clubs on Upton’s no-trade list. The Rangers and Braves are also said to be pursuing Upton, with both teams loaded talented prospects that could make a deal amenable if the Diamondbacks are willing to pull the trigger.

Upton is signed through the 2015 season, after which he will become a free agent. He will earn $9.75 million this season, $14.25 million in 2014, and $14.5 million in 2015.