"Texas badly wants Justin Upton, according to major-league sources. Arizona, seeking a shortstop, is focused on Asdrubal Cabrera.
The goals of those two clubs are driving talk of three- and four-team blockbusters at the winter meetings – and also might shed light on what is happening with the two biggest free agents, right-hander Zack Greinke and outfielder Josh Hamilton.
The Rangers' fervent push for Upton, according to one rival executive, is an indication of their confidence in landing Greinke, who also is being pursued by the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Upton, 25, would help replace the offense lost by the departure of Hamilton, who likely will be too expensive for the Rangers to keep if they sign Greinke. The Rangers want to add one top hitter and one top starting pitcher, preferably one through free agency, one through a trade, sources say.
And the Seattle Mariners, who met with Hamilton, his wife and agents at the winter meetings on Sunday, are poised to sign Hamilton if the Rangers do not, according to the Seattle Times.
All of the talks are fluid, and subject to change. The blockbuster, sources say, is taking on several new forms a day. Texas, Arizona and Cleveland are the constants. Different teams – Tampa Bay, Seattle and possibly Kansas City – have taken turns as the fourth club.
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