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Jake Peavy A Brave?

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Alabama son Peavy to pitch for Braves? It’s possible

By David O'Brien | Monday, October 6, 2008, 06:28 PM

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

He’s 27 years old, was a unanimous winner of the 2007 NL Cy Young Award, has averaged 192 innings and 194 strikeouts in six full seasons in the majors, and is under contract through 2011.

I don’t know, but it seems like the only way Jake Peavy could be a more perfect fit for the pitching-hungry Braves would be if he were a native Southerner.

What’s that? He was born in, raised in, and still lives in Alabama?

Well, ****, then what’s the holdup? Get that boy in a Braves uni, stat.

OK, so it’s not going to be that easy. But for all the denizens out there who believe your Braves don’t have a chance of prying Peavy out of San Diego and bringing home this native son — hey, he’s practically that — to pitch in Atlanta, well, don’t be so quick to dimiss the notion.

The Braves are holding organizational meetings this week at Dark Star (aka Lake Buena Vista, Fla.) and you can bet that Peavy’s name is going to be discussed, as in, how serious are the Padres about the possibility of trading him, and what will they want in return?

For a team that’s publicly stated it will use its assets however necessary to fill its primary needs — two starting pitchers and an outfielder with some power — rest assured the Braves will talk about how much of those assets, how many young players and/or prospects, it would take to get Peavy from the Padres.

What do you think, is that something most of you would get behind? I’m guessing most of you would.

Peavy will make $11 million in 2009, $15 million in 2010, $16 million in 2011 and $17 million in 2012. There’s also a big ol’ $22-million team option for 2013, with a $4 million buyout.

For a Braves team with more than $40 mill, perhaps more than $45 mill, to spend on additions for 2009, Peavy’s backloaded contract would work well because it would also allow them to sign or trade for another starting pitcher and outfielder, and bring back whichever ones they can or want to from the pitching group of Mike Hampton and the two still-not-sure-if-they-can-pitch-agains, John Smoltz and Tom Glavine.

The notion of getting an in-his-prime ace like Peavy, who’s averaged 13 wins over six full seasons with mostly mediocre San Diego teams, a guy who posted sub 2.90 ERA in four of the past five seasons, became a legitimate possibility after Padres GM Kevin Towers said last week that no one was untouchable, not even Peavy.

That’s because the Padres have ever-present payroll restrictions and are coming off a wholly disappointing 99-loss season, and Towers said they want to get younger.

Peavy’s plenty young, and they’d much prefer to keep their all-time strikeout leader, but if a team approaches towers with an offer for Peavy that includes several young, inexpensive, potential impact players, he’ll listen.

The Braves have a couple of potential big advantages over, say, the big-market teams in New York. For one, they have more quality pitching depth in their minor league system that they might be willing to part with (GM Frank Wren said last week that the Braves might be able to make a trade using some of that pitching, without trading top prospect Tommy Hanson).

Secondly, and this is a potential deal-maker or breaker: It’s quite possible that Peavy might not approve a trade to a New York team. Folks, the dude plays baseball in San Diego and yet chooses to make his residence in Semmes, Ala.

The season ends and he leaves sun-kissed SoCal to winter with the wife and kids in ‘Bama. So, you think this country boy just might be more inclined to approve a trade to the team he grew up loving, the Braves, than, say, the Yankees?

I’m thinking that’s a good bet.

The Braves lost their ace, Tim Hudson, when the Alabama native and former Auburn standout had Tommy John surgery that will likely sideline Hudson for all but the last month of the 2009 season, and possibly the entire season.

That made it imperative that the Braves this winter find a replacement No. 1 starter to replace Hudson, whose four-year, $47 million contract extension runs through 2009 (there’s a $12 mill option for 2010, with a $1 mill buyout).

Now comes the tantalizing possibility of Peavy, who, by the way, was set to pitch for Auburn before he signed with the Padres out of high school (St. Paul’s Episcopal) in 1999. He was a modest 10-11 in 27 starts this season, but that record is more indicative of the Padres’ anemic run support than anything else.

Peavy had an outstanding 2.85 ERA and a solid 1.180 WHIP (walks-plus-hits per inning pitched) that was right at his career mark. He received just under 3.7 support runs per nine innings pitched, a woeful figure that included eight starts in which the Padres scored one or no runs while he was in the games.

If Peavy is indeed available, the Braves should make a serious attempt to get him, provided they’re comfortable with his health.

When I asked someone in the organization, the response was anything but dismissive of the possibility of making a run at Peavy, if the Padres would deal him.

While they don’t want to mortgage the future by trading away top prospects such as Jason Heyward, Freddie Freeman, Jordan Schafer and Hanson, the Braves have plenty of other prospects, especially pitchers, who might interest Towers enough to make a deal.

They don’t want to give up a pitcher such as Hanson or Kris Medlen, or an outfielder such as Gorkys Hernandez or Schafer, but perhaps the Braves would bite the bullet if that’s what it took to get Peavy, who’s no ordinary ace. Maybe — and I’m just throwing out ideas here — the Padres would be interested in Kelly Johnson, since they’re not certain about their second base position next season and like good OBP guys who can drive balls to the gaps.

(If I’m the Braves, I wouldn’t want to give up Johnson unless absolutely necessary. I really do think he can be one of the best hitting second basemen in baseball next season, and that there’s a good chance he’ll become less streaky.)

If they move a Johnson or another young player off the current team, then the Braves would have another need to fill. But again, Peavy is a special talent. A serious ace. He is one of the eight or 10 bonafide, true “No. 1” pitchers in baseball, a pitcher you hand the ball to and expect to win every time.

He’s got nasty stuff and a hard-nosed demeanor and work ethic. The whole package, if you ask folks who should know, including Don Sutton.

The drawback, or potential red flag: Elbow.

He had an elbow scare in May that sidelined him four weeks, but an MRI showed no ligament damage and Peavy bounced back from that to record 13 quality starts in his last 18 games.

In seven of his 13 starts after July 4, he allowed one or no runs in seven or more innings, including an Aug. 31 start against Colorado in which he threw eight scoreless innings of five-hit ball with 13 strikeouts and two walks.

He only made two starts in September, missing some time to witness the birth of his third child. The Padres were cautious bringing him back from that slowly, since they were out of postseason contention and because of the earlier elbow problems.

Peavy also missed six weeks for a strained flexor tendon in that forearm/elbow in 2004, when he went 15-6 with a 2.27 ERA in 27 starts with 177 strikeouts in 163-1/3 innings.

In each of the next three seasons, he recorded over 200 innings and at least 215 strikeouts, including 223-1/3 innings with a league-high 240 strikeouts in 2007, when he finished 19-6 with a 2.54 ERA and won the Cy Young Award.

I went back to early in the 2006 season to find where Peavy really struggled for any significant period. Then I checked his stats since then, to compare him with some other of the game’s elite aces.

Beginning with July 26, 2006, Jake Peavy is 36-20 with a 2.63 ERA, with a .215 opponents’ average, 490 strikeouts and 154 walks in 474-1/3 innings.

In that same period, Brandon Webb is 44-22 with a 3.36 ERA, with a .239 opponents’ average, 436 strikeouts and 160 walks in 535-2/3 innings.

In that same period, Johan Santana is 38-21 with a 2.82 ERA, with a .224 opponents’ average, 528 strikeouts and 134 walks in 536 innings.

In that same period, CC Sabathia is 41-22 with a 2.91 ERA, with a .247 opponents’ average, 540 strikeouts and 113 walks in 585-1/3 innings.

CC is an absolute horse, a pitcher any team would love at the top of its rotation. But speculation is that his stretch-drive performance with the Brewers could net him a free-agent contract worth at least $100 million over the next five years, and perhaps $150 mill over the next seven years.

Peavy is owed $59 million over the next four seasons, and $63 million when the buyout of his 2012 salary is included. He’s not as durable as those four listed above, and there is some concern that his pitching mechanics will lead to more serious elbow problems.

But if the Braves want a seriously dominant ace, at a relatively affordable price, they’d best kick the tires of the Southern boy. If the Padres are seriously considering trading him, then the Braves should seriously consider making it happen. Look over his recent MRI with a fine-tooth comb. Three times.

Then, if it comes to that, if a trade can be worked out, have him undergo another MRI with Braves doctors. Have James Andrews look that baby over (Doc Andrews should be giving the Braves a bulk discount this year anyway, right?)

The answer to the Braves’ biggest pitching problem could come from not far away. A serious, dominating, intimidating ace - and from just up the road.

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I would die if the Braves landed Peavy without giving up Jordan Schafer, Jason Heyward, Tommy Hanson or Freddie Freeman. I have seen alot of people say the Braves need to dump Francoeur. I have yet to honestly figure that one out. Yes he had a bad year but what about the 2 good years he had in 2006 and 2007? Does that not mean anything? Does the fact that he is only 25 heading into next year mean anything? It should and I believe that all the Francoeur rumors are just BS. I also seen where people were willing to trade away Yunel Escobar. Wow. Why would you trade Escobar? To let Lillibridge play? Come on. The kid looks like he is about 12 and hits like it. Lillibridge is trade bait. Brandon Jones is trade bait.

I say start by offering Cole Rohrbough, Jeff Locke, Jo-Jo Reyes, Charlie Morton, Brandon Jones, Brent Lillibridge and maybe Kelly Johnson. And then see where trade talks go after that.

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Our biggest problem has been our SP rotation. We really need to give up the Hampton project and get younger. I really like Chipper and Smoltz but they command 15-17million each per year and we could use that to get younger. Chipper had a great year but went down when we really needed him. It seems that is the case for the last several years. My big gripe was letting Texiria go. He is a streaky hitter but I really believed he would have worked out here.

2 big issues that we need to address is dump high paying salaries and get 2 solid SP.

Acquire through the farm 2-3 solid relief pitchers, also 1-2 additional home grown infielders, 3rd base and a solid 1st base.

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Our biggest problem has been our SP rotation. We really need to give up the Hampton project and get younger. I really like Chipper and Smoltz but they command 15-17million each per year and we could use that to get younger. Chipper had a great year but went down when we really needed him. It seems that is the case for the last several years. My big gripe was letting Texiria go. He is a streaky hitter but I really believed he would have worked out here.

2 big issues that we need to address is dump high paying salaries and get 2 solid SP.

Acquire through the farm 2-3 solid relief pitchers, also 1-2 additional home grown infielders, 3rd base and a solid 1st base.

No way Smoltz gets anywhere near that much after his shoulder surger. Smoltz and Glavine are not gonna get anything more than a really low base salary. We had no choice but to trade Teixeira and get something for him. Boras wants to make him the 2nd 200 million dollar man and no way the Braves could afford that.

We have alot of really solid guys in the minors its just that they are in A ball. Jason Heyward is our future LF. Freddie Freeman is our future 1B. I'm not sure who our future 3B guy is. Jordan Schafer is our future CF. Tommy Hanson is could be in the SR next year.

We are losing alot of high salaries off the books. We only have about 50-55 million comitted toward next years roster. We have plenty of money to spend. I am really looking forward to 2011.

Braves possible 2011 lineup.

C = Brian McCann

1B = Freddie Freeman

2B = Kelly Johnson

3B = ???

SS = Yunel Escobar

LF = Jason Heyward

CF = Jordan Schafer

RF = Jeff Francoeur

SP = Jair Jurrjens

That equals WS championship. :D

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Why? It has a question mark for a reason? :unsure:

? helped but you could have worded it so much better it implied that something was in the works wish is nothing more than rumor.

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Braves possible 2011 lineup.

C = Brian McCann

1B = Freddie Freeman Kotchman is under contract through 2011

2B = Kelly Johnson unless he is traded then it will be Prado

3B = ???

SS = Yunel Escobar

LF = Jason Heyward

CF = Jordan Schafer Jordon has not proven he can play in the bigs and we have Anderson that has so ?

RF = Jeff Francoeur

SP = Jair Jurrjens

That equals WS championship. :D

http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpag...MLB&ID=3832

I do not totally agree with your lineup since Freeman is such a hit or miss guy do not know if he has what it takes to make it. Jordan still has some more to prove now he is a very good "prospect" but Anderson made a good case for himself in his call up. Heyward falls under the same as Jordan but I do feel he will be our LF since it is empty. I also think Yunel could eventually be moved to 3rd with his size and arm.

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http://www.rotoworld.com/content/playerpag...MLB&ID=3832

I do not totally agree with your lineup since Freeman is such a hit or miss guy do not know if he has what it takes to make it. Jordan still has some more to prove now he is a very good "prospect" but Anderson made a good case for himself in his call up. Heyward falls under the same as Jordan but I do feel he will be our LF since it is empty. I also think Yunel could eventually be moved to 3rd with his size and arm.

Well this was based solely on the fact that all the prospects pan out like they are expected to. :P

Yes I know Kotchman is under contact thru 2011 but he could be used as trade bait IMO this offseason if you could convince Chipper to move over to 1B to keep the seat warm a couple of years until Freeman is ready. Chipper wants to play 4 more years but I don't think his body will let him.

I liked Josh Anderson when he first was called up but did you see how much he stuggled in September? Outside of two 3 hit games against the Astros that got his average back up to .294 he really struggled getting on base. Take those 2 games out and his BA for September was .261. The old saying is you can't still first. Also 2 walks and 29 strikeouts in the month of September isn't gonna cut it either. For a leadoff hitter he doesn't walk nearly enough and he strikeouts out way too often. I like having his speed in CF because he is good defensively and the Braves haven't had a true leadoff hitter since Furcal left.

The reason I left open 3B is because the Braves don't really have a top notch 3B in the farm system.

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The reason I left open 3B is because the Braves don't really have a top notch 3B in the farm system.

I have heard of Brandon Hicks, currently one of our top 10 prospects at SS, moving to 3B. Jon Gilmore, a younger 3B prospect has shown (very) early signs of talent.

Also, many people think that Tyler Flowers has become serious trade bait. I might look for him to be dealt for some RHP or 3B.

I have also always said that Yunel Escobar would be a great 3B. He has the arm, and his great defense from SS would easily translate. Yunel at 3B and Lillibridge at SS wouldn't be terrible, assuming Lillibridge proves that last season was a fluke.

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We really need to give up the Hampton project and get younger.

I think it's a slam dunk Hampton is back next year and I'm good with that. He looked nearly unhittable at times down the stretch.

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Francoeur is gonna have a comeback year.

.275 BA, 25 HR, 95 RBI

You heard it here first. :P

And he'd still have an OBP of around .315 and an OPS of .700-.750. Thanks but no thanks.

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I have heard of Brandon Hicks, currently one of our top 10 prospects at SS, moving to 3B. Jon Gilmore, a younger 3B prospect has shown (very) early signs of talent.

Also, many people think that Tyler Flowers has become serious trade bait. I might look for him to be dealt for some RHP or 3B.

I have also always said that Yunel Escobar would be a great 3B. He has the arm, and his great defense from SS would easily translate. Yunel at 3B and Lillibridge at SS wouldn't be terrible, assuming Lillibridge proves that last season was a fluke.

I remember seeing Tyler Flowers in a ST game last year and thinking wow. But dang he's a catcher. I'm sure he has some series trade value.

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And he'd still have an OBP of around .315 and an OPS of .700-.750. Thanks but no thanks.

^^^^^^^^^^^^^Forgets that run production is the most important thing in baseball.

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Well this was based solely on the fact that all the prospects pan out like they are expected to. :P

Yes I know Kotchman is under contact thru 2011 but he could be used as trade bait IMO this offseason if you could convince Chipper to move over to 1B to keep the seat warm a couple of years until Freeman is ready. Chipper wants to play 4 more years but I don't think his body will let him.

I liked Josh Anderson when he first was called up but did you see how much he stuggled in September? Outside of two 3 hit games against the Astros that got his average back up to .294 he really struggled getting on base. Take those 2 games out and his BA for September was .261. The old saying is you can't still first. Also 2 walks and 29 strikeouts in the month of September isn't gonna cut it either. For a leadoff hitter he doesn't walk nearly enough and he strikeouts out way too often. I like having his speed in CF because he is good defensively and the Braves haven't had a true leadoff hitter since Furcal left.

The reason I left open 3B is because the Braves don't really have a top notch 3B in the farm system.

Chipper has already stated that he does not want to make that move because it would be worse on his feet and his legs that it already is.

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Jake Peavy a Yankee sounds better

jCC Sabathia a Yankee sounds great too

The Yankees don't have the means to acquire a pitcher like Peavy, nor would he ever want to play in a place like New York.

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I remember seeing Tyler Flowers in a ST game last year and thinking wow. But dang he's a catcher. I'm sure he has some series trade value.

Flowers has some tremendous power, but is seriously lacking in defensive ability.

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For those that want to move Yunel to 3rd, WHY? Ask A-Rod how that transition goes. He had a rough few years fielding the ball. Personally, I'd rather keep Yunel at SS. He is solid there.

Also, we have questions in the OF as well. I have a shocking move I'd like to see us try to pull off for a CF to propose. Even if I don't know if they'd let him go, I'd love to see us try to trade ST. Louis out of Rick Ankiel. He has a very small contract ($900k). He's shown he can play the position, and he has a pretty good stick. I'd also not be opposed to moving Frenchy. He has problems learning to be patient at the plate, always has. I'd rather see a guy hit for average than go up there hacking to hit it out every pitch.

Also, our 1B position is shaky as well. Rumor has it that Prince Fielder might be available, and he'd come in at an affordable price. Takers?

Another thing I'm concerned about is the closer position. Mike Gonzalez is not the answer. K-Rod is reportedly going to be available. Sign him Frank.

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For those that want to move Yunel to 3rd, WHY? Ask A-Rod how that transition goes. He had a rough few years fielding the ball. Personally, I'd rather keep Yunel at SS. He is solid there.

Also, we have questions in the OF as well. I have a shocking move I'd like to see us try to pull off for a CF to propose. Even if I don't know if they'd let him go, I'd love to see us try to trade ST. Louis out of Rick Ankiel. He has a very small contract ($900k). He's shown he can play the position, and he has a pretty good stick. I'd also not be opposed to moving Frenchy. He has problems learning to be patient at the plate, always has. I'd rather see a guy hit for average than go up there hacking to hit it out every pitch.

YOu're also the same guy that doesn't think Chipper is a top-100 hitter all-time. So why should anyone take you seriously?

But I'll bite. When it comes to Yunel, he has the body-type and the arm strength to play 3B. It is not out of the question that he can be Chipper's replacement there.

And as for Ankiel? Get real! :lol: The Cardinals will not deal him after putting that much time in him and sticking by him after his career as a pitcher failed.

And Francouer's trade value is rock-bottom right now. You'd be lucky to get a bucket of baseballs for him. And I'll tell you the same thing I told jidady, BA is overrated. RUn production is the most important thing in baseball. And nobody was better at it w/2 outs and RISP then Francouer was in '06 and '07. If you hit .260, but drive in 110 and hit 30-35 HR's, I'll take that all day.

Sometimes I question whether you know as much baseball as you let on.

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YOu're also the same guy that doesn't think Chipper is a top-100 hitter all-time. So why should anyone take you seriously?

But I'll bite. When it comes to Yunel, he has the body-type and the arm strength to play 3B. It is not out of the question that he can be Chipper's replacement there.

And as for Ankiel? Get real! :lol: The Cardinals will not deal him after putting that much time in him and sticking by him after his career as a pitcher failed.

And Francouer's trade value is rock-bottom right now. You'd be lucky to get a bucket of baseballs for him. And I'll tell you the same thing I told jidady, BA is overrated. RUn production is the most important thing in baseball. And nobody was better at it w/2 outs and RISP then Francouer was in '06 and '07. If you hit .260, but drive in 110 and hit 30-35 HR's, I'll take that all day.

Sometimes I question whether you know as much baseball as you let on.

I said things I'd like to see them try, I said I didn't think they'd let Ankiel go. And as for Frenchy, I said I wouldn't mind seeing them move him. To the minors, to the bench, wherever. I don't care as long as it's not playing. If we could DH for him, he could play outfield. He sucks at the plate. We have pitchers that are better hitters, well had, they're hurt now.

Yunel could transition to third. I'd expect it to be a struggle at first, not saying he couldn't do it. And then we'd have a hole at SS, so one way or another we have to make a move for a left side infielder. Sure, eventually he'd be fine, but we have Chipper until he decides to retire. Face it, he's not going anywhere except on his terms. I don't think he'd play anywhere except Atlanta unless someone threw gobs of money at him, and I don't think he'd get as much as it would take to lure him from the Braves. And yes, I still don't think he's currently a top 100 hitter all-time. Doesn't mean I don't like the guy. I just don't think he's a top 100 all-time right now. Right now, he's the best hitter on this team. Why would we try to run him out of town by moving Yunel?

I'm thinking about our owner's group. They're not going to break the bank on anyone. We have to think realistically. I'm thinking about players that are good at their position but still at an afordable price. Look at Tampa Bay. Their payroll is low, but the lineup is filled with guys that are good enough at their position and put up good enough numbers. We have an owners group that's not going to put a team on the field with a $100+ million dollar pay roll. I'd be surprised to see $80-85 million. Thinking along those lines, I'm looking at guys that fill a need, are solid players, and have contracts that aren't astronomical.

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I said things I'd like to see them try, I said I didn't think they'd let Ankiel go. And as for Frenchy, I said I wouldn't mind seeing them move him. To the minors, to the bench, wherever. I don't care as long as it's not playing. If we could DH for him, he could play outfield. He sucks at the plate. We have pitchers that are better hitters, well had, they're hurt now.

Dude, he had one bad year. Relax. YOu must of missed his '06 and '07 years. He'll recover greatly next year.

Yunel could transition to third. I'd expect it to be a struggle at first, not saying he couldn't do it. And then we'd have a hole at SS, so one way or another we have to make a move for a left side infielder. Sure, eventually he'd be fine, but we have Chipper until he decides to retire. Face it, he's not going anywhere except on his terms. I don't think he'd play anywhere except Atlanta unless someone threw gobs of money at him, and I don't think he'd get as much as it would take to lure him from the Braves. And yes, I still don't think he's currently a top 100 hitter all-time. Doesn't mean I don't like the guy. I just don't think he's a top 100 all-time right now. Right now, he's the best hitter on this team. Why would we try to run him out of town by moving Yunel?

Show me your list of the 100 greatest hitters IYO.

And we wouldn't run Chip out of town. Yunel wouldn't move to 3B until Chip hangs em up.

I'm thinking about our owner's group. They're not going to break the bank on anyone. We have to think realistically. I'm thinking about players that are good at their position but still at an afordable price. Look at Tampa Bay. Their payroll is low, but the lineup is filled with guys that are good enough at their position and put up good enough numbers. We have an owners group that's not going to put a team on the field with a $100+ million dollar pay roll. I'd be surprised to see $80-85 million. Thinking along those lines, I'm looking at guys that fill a need, are solid players, and have contracts that aren't astronomical.

The Braves payroll this year was 102 million, but most of it was on the DL. Liberty has already said they are expanding payroll this offseason as they have done the last couple. It's just a matter of spending it wisely.

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