Justin Upton Trade Makes Atlanta Braves A 2013 Contender

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Upton wanted out of Arizona, and the Arizona Diamondbacks had a backlog of outfielders. Upton got his wish on Thursday in a trade to the Atlanta Braves that will see him join his brother B.J. Upton in a very powerful lineup. Upton will play in a lineup that includes Jason Heyward in the outfield along with Dan Uggla and Freddie Freeman. This trade makes the Braves a very real threat to the Washington Nationals in the National League East.

Upton should be hitting right in the middle of the Atlanta lineup and with that will come tons of chances for RBIs. I figure Upton finishes with about 35 home runs and 100-110 RBIs. The outfield is now completely stacked for the Braves and I wonder where everyone will be out there. I have to figure that Heyward moves to left field while the Uptons take center and right field, but we will find that out soon enough.

The Nationals should be very worried about this trade and what it means for their chances in the division, as the Braves can now put up runs in bunches. The only thing that is hampering Atlanta now is their pitching staff but if the Braves get that figured out, it could be a two-horse race. Upton though brings a powerful right-handed bat and also allows Arizona to not have to trade any other outfielders before the season starts. It is a trade that makes everyone happy on both sides with Arizona getting younger and more talented. The Diamondbacks have some rebuilding to do, but they are closer than anyone thinks. Upton gets his wish and gets to play with his brother in the process.

Andy Schmidt is a columnist/writer for RantSports. Follow him on Twitter @ASchmidtSports, like his Facebook page or add him to your network on Google.

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