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Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Articles tagged: Justin Upton

Report: Angels could seek to renegotiate Justin Upton deal

Justin Upton

The Los Angeles Angels want to keep outfielder Justin Upton, and they may have to get creative with his contract to do it.

Upton — who has four years and $88.5 million left on his contract, but an opt-out he can exercise after the World Series — could renegotiate his contract with the Angels, according to Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register.

Angels GM Billy Eppler said Friday that “there is dialogue going on” with Upton and his agent about possible scenarios going forward.

After a 35 home run season, Upton is reportedly likely to opt out, and his next contract will likely net him upwards of $100 million. There appears to be mutual interest between him and the Angels in a long-term stay.

Justin Upton expected to opt out of contract

Justin Upton

Justin Upton is expected to opt out of his current contract and become a free agent, according to a report.

Upton has four years and $88 million left on his current deal, which he signed as a free agent two years ago. His original deal with Detroit was for six years at over $132 million, but included the opt out after the second year.

MLB Network’s Jon Morosi says there is a possibility he could opt out and negotiate an even better deal with the Angels.

The Angels acquired Upton in a trade with the Tigers in August. He batted only .244 with the Angels but smashed seven doubles and seven home runs and produced an .884 OPS. His 44 doubles, 35 homers, 109 RBIs and .901 OPS this season were all career-highs, which makes this a good time for the 30-year-old to try and secure another large contract.

The Angels sent two prospects — including a talented Double-A pitcher — to the Tigers to get 27 games out of Upton, and they didn’t even make the playoffs. Now they face the possibility of losing him entirely, though it is possible that they will be the ones to sign him as a free agent.

Report: Angels close to acquiring Justin Upton from Tigers

Justin Upton

The Detroit Tigers have been looking to deal Justin Upton, and it appears they have found a suitor.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported on Thursday that the Tigers are close to a deal that would send Upton to the Los Angeles Angels, who are willing to trade for the outfielder even though he can potentially opt out of his contract after the season.

It’s unclear if Upton plans to opt out of the deal, as he would have to be certain he can sign a contract that is better than the four years and $88.5 million he has remaining. The former No. 1 overall pick is having one of the best seasons of his career with 28 home runs, 94 RBI and an OPS of .904, so opting out is not out of the question.

At least one other team was reportedly interested in Upton, but he doesn’t make much sense for many teams as a potential rental. The Angels are just one game back in the wild card race, so they must feel Upton could give them a boost and help them get to the postseason.

Giants reportedly interested in Justin Upton

Justin Upton

The Detroit Tigers have given consideration to cleaning house, and the San Francisco Giants have interest in one of their players.

MLB Network’s Jon Morosi says the Giants are interested in Justin Upton, whom the Tigers are considering trading.

As Morosi says, the issue is that Upton has an opt-out clause he could exercise after the season. Upton signed a six-year, $132.75 million deal with the Tigers prior to last season. The former No. 1 pick is enjoying one of the best seasons of his career, as he has 28 home runs and a .913 OPS this season.

If Upton were to opt out of his contract after this season, it would be with the confidence that his new deal would be for more money than the $88 million he is owed through 2021.

The Giants are out of the playoff race and have no use for a rental, so they would only want to acquire Upton if they have a reassurance the outfielder will not opt out of his current deal.

Justin Upton says knee injury is nothing serious

Justin Upton

Justin Upton left the Detroit Tigers’ opener against the Chicago White Sox after injuring his left knee in the field, but he says it’s nothing serious.

Upton hurt himself landing while making a catch in the bottom of the sixth inning on Tuesday. He ended up being removed for a pinch hitter in the top of the 7th.

Upton has been termed day-to-day with a knee contusion, but he said that the injury is nothing serious.

Upton was 1-for-3 with a run scored and strikeout prior to leaving the game.

5 MLB contract year players looking to cash in

The mythical contract year can be either a boon or a drag on an athlete. Some respond well, knowing that with a strong season, they can enter free agency as a hot commodity and really make a lot of money on the open market. Others feel the pressure and drag their value down as they struggle to handle it.

While every player entering a contract year will be hoping to gain the attention of franchises across the league, these five in particular could become free agents after the 2017 season and stand to gain a lot if they can put together a strong year.

5) Alex Cobb, SP, Tampa Bay Rays

Cobb once looked like baseball’s next ace, but as it has done to many a pitcher, Tommy John surgery hindered that.

The right-hander missed the entire 2015 season and didn’t make his 2016 debut until September, where he struggled to re-acclimate himself to the majors. Cobb’s stock is way down right now, but that’s what makes him such an intriguing option.

Cobb will be just 30 when he hits the open market at the end of 2017, and the numbers he was putting up before his surgery are worth remembering.

In 2013 and 2014, he started 49 games and posted a 2.82 ERA in a difficult AL East, striking out 8.2 batters per nine innings and keeping his walks low at 2.7 per nine. At the time, it looked like he was primed to become one of baseball’s most reliable pitchers. His injury robbed him of that, but if he can demonstrate in 2017 that he’s healthy and can pitch effectively, he may get a nice free agent deal, be it from Tampa Bay or elsewhere. Tommy John, after all, has a pretty good recovery rate, and teams are always looking for pitching.

4) Mike Moustakas, 3B, Kansas City Royals


Justin Upton: Tigers still feel we can win division


The Detroit Tigers are one of a handful of teams who need to decide before the Aug. 1 trade deadline if they want to be buyers or sellers. If Justin Upton was in charge, the decision would be a no-brainer.

The Tigers lost five of seven games heading into the All-Star break, but they have won three of four on the other side. They remain 5.5 games behind the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central and 2.5 out of the second wild card spot. Upton is so confident he is ignoring the wild card.

While the Tigers have ultimately been a disappointment with their 49-44 record, there’s no reason they can’t come alive. Starting pitchers Jordan Zimmerman and Daniel Norris are set to return from the disabled list soon, and they could give the rotation a major boost if healthy.

It would also help if Upton himself picked it up. The 28-year-old is hitting just .236 with 10 homers and 39 RBI this season. His .289 on-base percentage is by far the worst mark of his career since he played just 43 games in his rookie season back in 2007. Miguel Cabrera, a career .320 hitter, is batting just .287 on the year.

Basically, there’s a lot of room for improvement. The Tigers aren’t so far out of playoff contention where they have no choice but to sell, but do they trust what they have going forward? We’ll find out in the next two weeks.