MLB Trade Rumors: Justin Upton to the Pirates?

PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 08: Justin Upton #10 of the Arizona Diamondbacks hits a RBI triple against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on July 8, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

ESPN's Jayson Start reported that the Pirates are emerging as serious bidders in trade talks for Diamondbacks outfielder Justin Upton. Yesterday, it was reported that Dbacks GM Kevin Towers had a one-on-one conversation with Upton regarding the trade rumors, so it appears that a trade may happen.

Any trade for Upton would probably cost the Pirates several of their top prospects, so a combination of at least two or three of the following would make sense in any deal for Upton:

Gerrit Cole

Jameson Taillon

Starling Marte

Allen Hanson

Robbie Grossman

I imagine Cole and Marte would be included in the package as Marte is blocked by Andrew McCutchen and is close to being ready for the big leagues. Although he does have issues with taking the free pass, he has such a good glove in center field, that the Pirates would have to consider moving McCutchen to a corner outfield spot to make room for him.

Upton would fit in the middle of the Pirates lineup, hitting behind McCutchen and give the Pirates a big boost in their efforts to stay in the NL Central race in the second half of the season. Upton's value may take a bit of a hit, but he may also just need the change in scenery as well.

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