Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Justin Upton criticized by Diamondbacks staffer

Justin Upton is now an Atlanta Brave yet Arizona Diamondbacks staffer and former player Luis Gonzalez can’t stop talking about him after the blockbuster trade.

Gonzalez could have been towing the company line when he spoke with Arizona Sports 620?s Doug and Wolf last week.

“What we’ve gained now, is a couple of blue collar guys that are going to play the D-back way,” Gonzalez said.

“Which means they’ll go out there and play hard, give everything they’ve got.

“We love Justin Upton, of course the fans are going to miss him and we’re going to miss him… But at the same time, this is a business in baseball. What we are trying to do is make our team better.”

Boom. He could have ended right there and we can all be cool right?

Wrong.

“There were times when Justin was on, he was a superstar,” said Gonzalez. “But when he was off, he would get in his shell and would have those slumps and those streaks.

“When you’re in the middle of that lineup you have to be that rock every day when you’re going good and when you’re going bad. You have to provide that leadership for your teammates… Personally for me, there were times where (Justin) didn’t have that.”

Either Gonzalez has a personal gripe with Upton or the team wants to deflect the hum among baseball fans that the D’Backs  got somewhat played in the deal.

The easiest way to do that is to take a pot-shot at someone’s intangible assets.

Welcome to Sports Dissing 101.

“I think we got a pretty good player in return,” said Gonzalez referring to Martin Prado. “Not only that, but we have that depth in the outfield, and we are able to explore different options.

“Maybe, people think we got short-changed in the deal. But in the long run for us, we’ve added depth with not only two young pitchers (Randall Delgado and Zeke Spruill), but another young shortstop (Nick Ahmed) in the deal. We’ve continued to stockpile what we have.”

Gonzalez forgot to add and when they leave town, he’ll talk about them too.

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