The San Diego Padres have acquired veteran outfielder Justin Upton from the Atlanta Braves, marking the third, veteran acquisition the team has made to its totally revamped outfield in recent days.
The Padres have previously acquired Matt Kemp from the Dodgers and Wil Myers from Tampa Bay. ESPN reports it’s still uncertain what San Diego will give the Braves in exchange for Upton.
The 27-year-old Upton hit 29 homers and drove in 102 runs for Atlanta last season. He is entering the final year of a deal slated to pay him $14.5 million next season.
The 2015 season is quickly shaping up as a rebuilding year for the Braves, who earlier this season dealt veteran outfielder Jason Heyward to the St. Louis Cardinals.
In acquiring the veteran Upton, San Diego figures to field one of the league’s most slugging outfields. He and Kemp combined for 54 homers and nearly 200 RBIs last season. A two-time All-Star, over his nine-year career the 30-year-old Kemp smashed 182 homers for the Dodgers.
The Padres acquired Myers from the Rays as part of a three-team, 11 player deal. Myers was named American League Rookie of the Year in 2013 when he hit .293 with 13 homers and 53 RBIs.
Currently, San Diego also has outfielders Cameron Maybin, Seth Smith and Will Venable on their roster. But in acquiring the slugging Upton from the Braves, the team is expected to try and deal one of them before the start of the regular season.
Now set to enter his ninth big-league season, Upton already has four seasons of at least 26 homers and 70 RBIs.[Photo Credit: Paul Hadsall]