Mark Bowman, in a mailbag published Jan. 14:
As much as the Braves understand how beneficial it would be to add a second Upton to their outfield mix, general manager Frank Wren will not jeopardize the club’s future with a Mark Teixeira-type package. In fact, it seems safe to assume he would not necessarily give up as much as the Mariners would have if Justin Upton had not rejected their trade offer with the D-backs last week.
Piece for piece, the Braves could not match that [Mariners] package.
But as intriguing as it would be to add another Upton to a deep lineup, it still seems a little too early to be excited about the possibility of the trade. Even with the understanding that Justin Upton has become increasingly disgruntled by the fact he is being shopped, Arizona general manager Kevin Towers will continue to look for a significant return. There are also some evaluators who believe he would like to avoid trading Upton to a National League team.
There are two possibilities here: 1) The Braves are still in the mix for Upton and want to maximize their leverage by acting nonchalant, or 2) The Braves probably won’t be getting Upton and want to manage fan expectations.
I think that the second is a lot more likely than the first. Sorry, guys.