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Baseball Nation Predicts The Rangers Acquire Justin Upton And Zack Greinke Or Cole Hamels

The good folks over at SB Nation's Baseball Nation have posted five American League and National League predictions for the second half of the 2012 season.

As you'd expect, the two-time defending American League champion Texas Rangers are involved in the predictions. No, they don't currently have the best record, but they did for quite some time...and if Baseball Nation's predictions come true, well, they'll end up with the best record in baseball.

The Rangers trade for Justin Upton and Cole Hamels or Zack Greinke

This is because the Rangers are dicks.

But it's also because those two blockbusters aren't created equal. Upton isn't a short-term trade; he'll be around for a while, and he's the kind of player you hope your prospects will turn into in the first place. Hamels is a short-term trade. The Rangers have the organizational talent to do both, and they're cognizant of their place in the success cycle. They're good now. A bunch of prospects might help reinforce the team in 2015, but the Rangers might not be good in 2015. Things change quickly. Baseball!

Hamels/Greinke would give them an ace-type for the playoffs, and Upton would give them a middle-of-the-order hitter to fill the void if Josh Hamilton leaves. The two trades would take a big ol' bite out of the system, but considering the Rangers are already one of the best teams in baseball -- the best? -- it'd make them as unstoppable as a baseball team can get.

Well, I wouldn't call Jon Daniels, Nolan Ryan et al dicks for being good, but hey, the Rangers and Rangers fans should take it as a compliment. Texas has become the model franchise over the past few years, winning back-to-back pennants all the while maintaining the very best farm system in all of baseball.

Though losing two consecutive World Series certainly hurts, there's no doubting this is the golden era of being a Rangers fan. And if the Rangers can pull off a Justin Upton trade, it'll just become that much more golden.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.