This will be the third piece in a series that I’ve been putting together. If you’re new to the discussion, you can catch the first two below:
- Potential Marcell Ozuna Bad Contract Swap, Number 1
- Potential Marcell Ozuna Bad Contract Swap, Number 2
As you can see if you clicked the links above, some of these are a bit out of date. First off, Ozuna will not be sacrificing any money in 2022 and Byron Buxton has now signed an extension with the Twins. That doesn’t mean those deals are not still attainable, it just means that they’d need some altering. However, with any fan-fiction hypothetical trades, these are unlikely, but at least they shed light on the possibility of a bad contract swap happening. The Braves did it twice in the recent past and definitely could do it again.
A Reunion Upton Here?
On November 2nd, 2017, the Angels signed Justin Upton to a contract that they almost immediately regretted. Coming off of a career year with the Tigers and Angels, the Angels didn’t get enough of Upton, so they secured him to a 5/$109MM deal. 2022 will be the final year of his contract, but it’s also the balloon year of his deal, as he’ll be making $28MM.
Working Out the Deal
There’s no way to make the financials add up. Marcell Ozuna will make $53MM between 2022, ’23 and ’24, and Justin Upton will make $28MM. That’s a difference that the Braves would have to make up by adding prospects. Good thing they have the extra farmhands available to make that happen. Here’s the proposed fake deal:
- Angels get Marcell Ozuna, Bryce Elder, and Cristian Pache
- Braves get Justin Upton
It’s not sexy. Justin Upton could either be released or fill the role of DH, but it gets the job done and the biggest thing is that Ozuna’s money isn’t on the books. The Angels receive two cost-controlled pieces that could plug into their MLB team sometime in 2022 and stick around for quite some time. Feels like a win-win.
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