MLB.com's Bill Ladsen reports that the Nationals remain interested in Rays outfielder B.J. Upton. Upton, 26, is hitting .228 in 193 at-bats this season, with 7 home runs, 12 steals, and a .324 on-base percentage. The Rays are only three games out of first place, with still much of the season left to be played. It would not make sense for the Rays to trade him unless their was an heir apparent or Upton was still playing so bad and the return would cover them in the long-run.
The Nationals do not have too much to offer the Rays. They are reliant on their young pitching core and major offensive pieces need to be protected. Outfielder Jayson Werth is coming off a May in which he hit .287, bringing his average up to .254. If the Nats are willing to spend big on an outfielder, the return better be superior to what they are giving up (see Cubs' trade for Matt Garza). Upton could be entering his prime, but he has not had a year like '07 since, so the Nats may be able to buy low and hope a switch to the NL East changes things for the better.
A better option for the Nats would be to target Dodgers' outfielder Matt Kemp. Kemp is having a phenomenal year, and is making just 6.95 million dollars. For the Dodgers, however, they may need to shed cash and bring in some quality young talent, likely to the dismay of fans.