Arizona has a clear mission of finding a shortstop this Winter and have dangled Upton as a way to accomplish this, but Cleveland, who is willing to part with Cabrera, wants pitching, not an outfielder, in return. Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com says the talks have been on going, but have picked up steam at the Winter Meetings.
The Indians and D-backs have discussed the framework of a deal that centers around Tribe shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera and Arizona right-hander Trevor Bauer, an industry source said early Wednesday.
Bauer is Arizona’s top pitching prospect and one of the most highly regarded in baseball. He made his big league debut in 2012, but struggled to a 6.06 ERA in four starts. The biggest culprit in his struggles was the 13 walks he allowed in just 16 innings of work.
There are some within the Diamondbacks organization that have soured on Bauer, who goes through a unique and controversial warm-up routine against the wishes of the team, but if he stays healthy he has a chance to be an elite starting pitcher in the major leagues. In 22 starts between Double-A and Triple-A in 2012, Bauer was outstanding with a 12-2 record and 2.42 ERA and 157 strikeouts in just 130 innings. He still walked too many hitters, but the numbers were much more manageable in the minor leagues.
The Rangers, who need for Cabrera to be included in their talks with Arizona, would love to see this deal go away. Texas is lusting after Upton, but refuse to give up either of their two young shortstops to get him and instead have recruited the Indians to supply Cabrera. Presumably, Texas would surrender pitching to Cleveland.