As we get closer to July, the trade rumors involving BJ Upton are starting to heat up and his days in a Rays uniform might be winding down. It also means that we are getting closer to the (permanent) return of Desmond Jennings.
Bill Ladson is reporting that the Nationals are still looking for a center fielder and Upton is “one of their targets.” Ladson adds that Nationals’ GM Mike Rizzo believes that a “change of scenery” would be good for Upton’s career.
Back in April we learned that the Nationals were scouting Upton as a possibility to fill their need in center field but that they were not in a hurry to make a deal.
Michael Bourn of the Astros was also on the Nationals’ wish list, but talks between the two teams never went anywhere.
At the same time, we also heard that the Nationals may be willing to “overpay to get what they want.” The Rays may not be targeting specific players in return for Upton, but boy do they love teams that are willing to overpay.
Meanwhile, Jennings, who hit his ninth home run yesterday, continues to wait. He is waiting for his arbitration clock to tick down to a manageable date. And he is waiting for the clock on Upton’s time with the Rays to expire.
We know the arbitration clock will expire around the All-Star break. We wouldn’t be surprised if Upton was traded around the same time.