In the wake of the Justin Upton trade, it's time to analyze how that deal impacts the price
of Giancarlo Stanton, another young slugger who has been mentioned in trade rumors ever since the Miami Marlins moved several big-name players at the beginning of the offseason.
The Braves did well to give up big leaguers Martin Prado and Randall Delgado, along with prospects Zeke Spruill, Nick Ahmed and Brandon Drury, for Upton and Chris Johnson. The fact that Atlanta was able to hang onto right-handed pitching prospects Julio Teheran, J.R. Graham and Lucas Sims means the club didn't deplete its so-so farm system all that much at the top.
That may be bad news for the Marlins, who surely wouldn't consider such a package worthy of even contemplating trading Stanton -- and who can blame them? Compared to Upton, Stanton comes with fewer question marks, more club control and less money committed to him. Plus, as ESPN's Teddy Mitrosilis writes, Stanton still has plenty of room for improvement.
It appears the Diamondbacks received more bulk than impact, and it's difficult to believe the Marlins would even consider any trade that didn't overwhelm them with young, inexpensive talent with both high upside and high probability of reaching said upside.
The main difference? The Marlins have leverage; the Diamondbacks didn't, which was mostly their own fault, since they put themselves in a corner by trying to trade Upton for the last two-plus years. Not surprisingly, the club received what many consider to be less than market value.
If and when the Marlins get serious about trading Stanton, the Texas Rangers, Boston Red Sox, Seattle Mariners, St. Louis Cardinals and San Diego Padres may be the most equipped to land the best young power bat in baseball. It's also worth pointing out that the California-born Stanton has indicated that he prefers the West Coast, according to the Miami Herald's Barry Jackson. That could put the Mariners and Padres, as well as the Angels and Dodgers, in good position, if and when the time comes.
ESPN Insider's Keith Law offers his take on the package the Diamondbacks received:
"Arizona's return boils down to this: One year of Martin Prado, six years of a fifth starter in Randall Delgado, two fringy prospects, and one non-prospect. If that sounds like a good deal to you, I have some beachfront property in Phoenix to sell you."