For all the talk of an Upton to the Rangers for Elvis Andrus, I have a suggestion that would be more low key, but may make MORE sense for the Dbacks in improving their shortstop situation. Trade Chris Young to the Baltimore Orioles for JJ Hardy! Here's my reasoning:
1) Past trades - If you spend some time looking at trades around baseball, you notice that it seems like certain teams have a tendency to make trades more frequently with each other. It's just like the idea that you don't trade within your division. I think it also applies to making trades with people you're comfortable with. Over the last few years, the Dbacks have made multiple trades with the A's, White Sox, Rays, and Orioles.
2) Position Abundance - The Dbacks have a surplus in outfield talent short term as their current outfield consists of CY, Kubel, Parra, Upton, as well as Eaton and Pollock ready to contribute, so it only makes sense they would trade one of these assets to fill their short term shortstop need. The Orioles have done a good job of finding value in veteran middle infield players (Betemit/Quintanilla) and have organizational depth short-term and long-term to fill 3B/SS/2B (Machado/Schoop/Delmonico).
3) Position Scarcity - Even though I like Jake Elmore, he seems like he's better suited as a utility player, kind of reminds me of a young Willie Bloomquist, doesn't do anything well, but does everything adequately. I think most people believe that Chris Owings is the future at short-stop for the Dbacks, but he probably won't be ready to contribute unti 2015. The Orioles are set at CF and RF with Adam Jones and Nick Markakis, but LF has been a HUGE question mark for them. Nolan Reimold would be a great option, but he's missed almost the whole year due to a neck injury that required surgery, and there's a big question mark on how he will recover and be ready for next year. As a result, the Orioles have had to use the likes of Endy Chavez, Lew Ford, Chris Davis, and Nate McLouth to fill that spot. The Orioles do not have anybody in the minors that would be ready to step in next year.
4) Performance - CY is who we know he is, a .230 hitter that will hit 20 HR and steal 20 bases and provides above average defense in center. He should be able to provide gold glove caliber defense in LF. JJ Hardy is only hitting .232 this year, but that's mostly as a result of a .246 BABIP (career .275 BABIP). Hardy's LD/GB/FB rates are consistent this year with his career. He provides good power and gold glove caliber defense from a middle infield position (remind anyway of another player the Dbacks traded for from the AL East?).
5) Salaries - CY is due $8.5mil for 2013 with an $11mil club option for 2014 with a $1.5mil buyout, so $10mil guaranteed. JJ Hardy is due $7mil for 2013 and $7mil for 2014, so $14 guaranteed.
With this trade in the offseason, it solidifies the OF for the Orioles for 2013 and possibly 2014 if they decide to exercise CY's club option. This trade also solidifies a position of need for the Dbacks for the next 2 years while we wait for Owings. To make the salaries more even, the Dbacks could also send Willie Bloomquist to the Orioles, which would also provide some infield depth for the Orioles as well as the "veteran presence" that it seems like old school managers like Buck Schowalter would want on their and may be a welcome to a young team on the rise like the Orioles.
I know this trade doesn't seem as exciting as the idea of getting back a young rising star like Elvis Andrus or Alcides Escobar or a hot prospect like Mike Olt or Wil Myers, but I believe this is a trade that would make a lot more sense for not only the Dbacks, but their trade partner as well.