Could the Minnesota Twins sign a former enemy bat?

benjaminchase
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 30: Mike Moustakas
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 30: Mike Moustakas /
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CHICAGO, IL – AUGUST 26: Justin Upton
CHICAGO, IL – AUGUST 26: Justin Upton /

Justin Upton

Originally the #1 overall pick in 2005 by the Arizona Diamondbacks, the big-swinging righty hitter has morphed from the guy who was once a 20-20 guy with the Diamondbacks, though he still has some ability on the base paths. Coming to the majors at just 19, Upton had a big start to his career with Arizona, hitting .278/.357/.475 with 108 home runs over 731 games.

The Braves acquired the outfielder from Arizona in a big trade, and he had two very streaky seasons with the Braves where he showed himself to be a power hitter, but that his defensive skills, once a positive, had now declined to where he was a below-average defender.

The Braves made him a focus of their rebuild, trading him with one season before his free agency to the San Diego Padres, where he had an excellent first half in 2015, but he fell off in the second half. The Tigers signed him as a free agent after the 2015 season, and he has topped 30 home runs both of the last two seasons.

This year, he hit .273/.361/.540 with 35 home runs, earning his 4th All-Star selection. He finished the season with a month as part of the Los Angeles Angels.

Upton still has 4 years and $88.5M left on his contract, but he does have the opportunity this offseason to opt-out of the deal. Of course, that would mean he’s looking for either more than 4 years or more than ~$22M per season if he would opt out, so that should be considered in the Twins bidding.

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