The Los Angeles Angels have been looking for help in the outfield this winter, primarily in left field. According to Jon Morosi of FOX Sports, the Angels and free agent outfielder Justin Upton have been in "ongoing conversation."
The report by Morosi was shot down by Jeff Fletcher of the Orange Country Register. Fletcher was told by a source that there is "nothing happening" between Upton and the Angels. The conflicting reports make this an interesting ongoing topic between the two parties.
The Angels have a huge need in left field and Upton would be a perfect fit. Owner Arte Moreno and the club would have to go over the luxury tax threshold if they added the 28-year-old to the roster. As a matter of fact, any high profile outfielder like Upton, Alex Gordon, Jason Heyward, Kole Calhoun or Yoenis Cespedes would require the front office to surpass the threshold.
Los Angeles seems to be the deepest in conversation for the former San Diego Padres outfielder. The Baltimore Orioles were reported to possibly make a bid for Upton or Gordon, while the San Francisco Giants reportedly are looking to add a big bat.
Upton, 28, was the first pick in the 2005 MLB Draft by the Arizona Diamondbacks, who he played for from 2007-2012 before being dealt to the Atlanta Braves. Upton was traded by the Braves two seasons later to the Padres with Aaron Northcraft for Max Fried, Dustin Peterson, Maxell Smith and Jace Peterson on November 2, 2015.
Over his nine-year Major League career, Upton has played 1,184 games and has slashed .271/.352/.473 with 190 home runs. The outfielder earned All-Star honors in 2009, 2011 and 2015, which he hit a combined 83 home runs and 255 RBI across 447 games.
Meanwhile, if the Angels got Upton and made the playoffs, they could bet on some decent hitting. He has hit .299 with two homers and four RBI during 15 postseason games.