As reported by Bob Nightengale, and corroborated elsewhere, both Upton brothers are being shopped their respective teams. B.J. Upton's availability is no surprise. He's arbitration-II and likely to get a raise on this season's $3 million dollars. Bossman Junior is 26 now and seemingly established as a low-OBP, high-power, good defense center fielder in the mold of a rich man's Christopher B. Young.
His little brother Justin, on the other hand, just turned 23 and already posted a .899 OPS season at age 21. He's a phenom, arguably the most talented young hitter in baseball, and is apparently available for less than Stephen Drew. Upton will make $4.25 million next year and very reasonable $39.5M through 2015. FanGraphs ranked him as the 11th most valuable trade asset in baseball, ahead of the Mets' best chip, David Wright.
His availability seems like a clear example of a new GM trying to flip a star for a bunch of talent he gets to pick. Upton's age, upside, and contract, however, make this instance a little absurd. Sandy Alderson and Kevin Towers have good working relationship from San Diego and are both trying to reshape their new teams. Upton also fits Alderson's profile of a player whose defense suits the ballpark, but bat would play anywhere.