In short, the Mets have new competition in their quest to trade their premium outfielder, Carlos Beltran, in the form of the Rays and Upton. Because of the complicated circumstances surrounding a potential Beltran trade, interest is shifting toward Upton, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com.
Beltran might be more attractive because he's a better hitter than Upton. However, questions remain about Beltran's defense in the outfield, as he's probably best suited for work in a corner spot. As well, he's a free agent at season's end, and his contract includes a stipulation that he may not be offered arbitration, meaning teams will be reluctant to part with top prospects for a two-month rental who won't yield compensatory draft picks. Upton, meanwhile, is a better defender, is a pure center fielder, and is under team control through 2012.
If you were a team searching for an outfielder, would you pursue Beltran or Upton?