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Report: Rangers offered Garza, Nathan, Murphy for J. Upton

In an article about Nelson Cruz, Bob Nightengale writes that the Rangers offered Joe Nathan, Matt Garza, and David Murphy to the Atlanta Braves for Justin Upton at the trade deadline

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Otto Greule Jr

Bob Nightengale has a story about Nelson Cruz, his working out in Arizona while hoping he'll have a chance to play in the postseason for the Rangers, and why he chose not to appeal his Biogenesis suspension, saying it was out of his hands, and that he was being threatened with a 100 game suspension if he appealed.

However, most interesting to me was this item:

The Rangers, trying to solve that power void, tried to pull off a blockbuster deal for Atlanta Braves outfielder Justin Upton before the July 31 trade deadline. The Rangers offered starter Matt Garza, All-Star closer Joe Nathan and outfielder David Murphy, but they were rejected, two high-ranking club officials told USA TODAY Sports. They spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were unauthorized to publicly talk about personnel decisions.

That would have been, to put it mildly, a blockbuster.  There were rumors that the Rangers were willing to part with Joe Nathan at the deadline, given that Joakim Soria was back and Neftali Feliz was returning, along with the rest of the solid arms in the pen.  And there were also rumors that the Rangers were willing to flip Garza.  And really, in late July, I was publicly advocating at least shopping Nathan and Garza, to see what was out there, because at the time, the team's playoff prospects didn't look great.

But a Garza/Nathan/Murphy for Upton deal would have been a game changer.  Upton is under contract through 2015, which means that, while that deal might not have done much to improve the team's prospects in 2013, it would have put the team in a much stronger position for the next two years, given that all three of those players are free agents after the season and likely will not return to Texas.

Texas went hard after Upton this offseason, and again at the trade deadline.  I suspect they will be talking to Atlanta again this winter about trying to land the mercurial right fielder.