The Baltimore Orioles and the San Diego Padres have discussed a trade involving Justin Upton, according to Jayson Stark of ESPN. Stark also said that the two sides could talk about a deal involving Padres pitchers, with Andrew Cashner and Tyson Ross being the two he pointed out.
— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) July 27, 2015
San Diego is trying to unload some of their expensive players that they added this offseason. The team added big name players like Upton, Craig Kimbrel, Matt Kemp and Wil Myers. Out of those four players Upton and Kimbrel are the most likely to be moved before the deadline, as the team looks to rebuild a farm system that took a hit. The Padres are currently 47-52 and set 8.5 games out of first place in the NL West.
The Orioles aren’t in a much better situation and have a record of 48-49 and set 7 games out of first. Most people think they should be sellers at the deadline and try and improve their farm system, which currently ranks at 17th in our rankings, but it looks as if they will take a hit when we update our rankings in a few weeks. Other teams have shown interest in impending free agents like Matt Wieters, Chris Davis, Tommy Hunter and Wei-Yin Chen. The team should be able to move Wieters and receive a top prospect in return.
Upton would be an expensive short-term rental and would deplete the farm system even more and give the Orioles something that they don’t need in more offense. The 27-year-old is also having one of the worse seasons of his career, hitting a slash of .251/.330/.429 with 16 homers and 50 RBIs in 383 plate appearances. The All-Star outfielder is in the prime of his career, but this could be a bad deal for the Orioles with this being the last year of his contract.
A deal for Cashner or Ross makes more sense, as both players are controlled past this season. Ross is under team control through 2017 and Cashner through 2016. Both pitchers have struggled to get run support this season, which Baltimore could give them plenty of.
Baltimore starters are ranked 20th in the majors with a team ERA of 4.24. Both San Diego starters would give the Orioles an instant upgrade. The Orioles may have enough talent to make the trade, but it will most likely require former first-round pick Kevin Gausman.