Could the Phillies and Peavy Be a Match?


peavy.jpgJake Peavy
told the Padres yesterday that he would not accept a trade to the White Sox.

He wants to play in the National League.

Hey, aren’t the Phillies in the National League? Don’t they need starting pitching?

It got me wondering: Could the Phillies and Peavy be a match?

Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. declined comment.

“We do not discuss trades,” he said.

There are a few reasons Peavy and the Phillies could fit. Of course, there also are a couple BIG (BIG!) reasons they would not.

Let’s first look at the reasons why it isn’t completely crazy to think Peavy could join the Phillies:

  1. Peavy has made it clear he wants to play in the National League. The Phillies can offer him that much, but he might not be as keen on pitching at Citizens Bank Park as he is at Petco Park. But, hey, maybe Cole Hamels could make a call.
  2. The Phillies need starting pitching. Their starters have a combined 6.31 ERA, which is the worst in baseball. That is nearly a full run worse than the Nationals (5.35 ERA), who are second-worst in the NL. Amaro has said the Phillies won’t stand pat if the starting pitching doesn’t improve. He has reasons for that. One of them is this team’s nucleus (Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, Brad Lidge, Hamels, etc.) is in its prime. I think if the Phillies have the chance to make a move to put a championship run together, they will try for it. Why not take advantage of the nucleus’ best years while they can?
  3. The Phillies have the talent to make the trade. They were believed to be the runner-up last year for CC Sabathia, but the Indians wanted a power-hitting corner outfielder close to the big leagues, which the Phillies did not have. The White Sox reportedly were prepared to send top pitching prospects Aaron Poreda and Clayton Richard and two other Minor League pitchers in the Peavy deal. The Phillies could match that in terms of talent. Carlos Carrasco, Lou Marson, Jason Donald, Kyle Drabek, Joe Savery, Michael Taylor and Dominic Brown are top-level prospects that could land somebody like Peavy.
  4. While the Phillies have a franchise-record payroll of more than $130 million, they have sold more than 3 million tickets this season and seem to be in better financial shape than other teams — and thus potentially more able to take Peavy’s contract. Peavy will make $11 million this season, $15 million in 2010, $16 million in 2011 and $17 million in 2012. He has a $22 million club option for 2013.

But here are a couple reasons why all this talk might be wishful thinking:

  1. Peavy has a full no-trade clause, so he has all the power. He doesn’t have to go anywhere he doesn’t want go. Peavy has a home in Southern California, and he likes it there. It is believed he expressed over the winter that he didn’t have interest in pitching for the Red Sox or Yankees, which might mean he doesn’t want to play anywhere on the East Coast (that’s a long way from Southern California, don’t you know). Philly might be in the NL, but it’s a long way from home. That’s a big strike one against it.
  2. Peavy might think pitching in the Bank is too similar to pitching in the AL. Strike two.
  3. Peavy might ask the Phillies to pick up that $22 million option in 2013 to make the trade happen. The Phillies don’t like giving pitchers more than three-year contracts. That would turn Peavy’s deal into three-plus seasons into four-plus seasons. That is a lot of risk for the Phillies. And consider they already have at least $95.5 million committed in payroll next season, and at least $80.5 million committed in payroll in 2011. Tack on Peavy’s deal and that’s a TON of money committed to just a few players over the next couple seasons. That would mean the Phillies would need to rely on some of that top young talent to start producing at the big-league level because the Phillies aren’t going to spend money continuously like the Yankees. But — woops — some of them have been traded to acquire Peavy. Now what? That’s Strike three.

Am I crazy for even bringing it up? (Don’t answer that.) But it’s at least fun to think about.

21 Comments

No Todd you’re not crazy! Just looking out for the best interest of the Fightins. Most people’s gut reaction would be to go for it, but I guess its hard to determine if the price is too high not only in $$$s, but in future personnel.

You’re not crazy.

But the Phillies don’t have enough cash or enough prospects. The Padres were just in the playoffs in 2005 and they have been itching to get back ASAP. They’ll want a boatload in return.

Todd,
though are ball park may be small, our offense rakes, which should help offset that a bit. Additionally, so long as we can keep Donald, Drabek and one of either Taylor or Brown I think our system would be fine. D’arnaud is an up a coming catcher to replace marson, and we have a good amount of pitching to replace Carrasco (Worley, Knapp, Bastardo, Stutes). If I recall correctly, Keith Law made a comment in one of his ESPN chats during spring training saying the Phillies definitely have the talent in their system to get Peavy. I say do it. Most of our young talent will hit in 2011 right when we need it. Also, Brett Meyers is a free agent right? We will need proven second pitcher in our rotation next year, are we going to have one with out Meyers? Not sure…

He is not worth it.

Peavy is an extreme fly-ball pitcher and that will mean bad news at CB park. In every season of his major league career, he was able to watch fly balls be swallowed up in Petco Park. His career gb/fb ratio is 0.78.

Also, there is a significant difference from his ERA and WHIP on the road.

HOME – 2.54 ERA, 1.08 WHIP
AWAY – 3.73 ERA, 1.298 WHIP

He’s also allowed 33 more home runs on the road in 300 less innings. Teams hit with an OPS+ of 118 on the road compared to 83 at home.

I think Peavy is a great pitcher, but I also think he benefits a lot from Petco Park.

Rich (RTP): Is there enough in the Phillies’ system to make a run at landing Peavy?

Keith Law: Absolutely. Donald, Marson, Brown, and maybe a lower-level arm – I have to imagine that would do it. The Padres would get an everyday ss, a near-term everyday catcher (whom I imagine they love because of his plate discipline), a high-ceiling guy in Brown, plus another guy. And the Phillies would still have Carrasco, Taylor, d’Arnaud, etc., so it’s not as if they’d be gutting the system. The question is more whether Peavy is worth that package of prospects than whether the Phils could land him.

Part of Keith Law Chat on ESPN from 4/9

Todd, you are not crazy. Thank you for posting this. I have been asking these questions since the rumors started last year. Weren’t the Braves in discussions with the Padres for a trade last year? If he was willing to go to the Braves (that is a big assumption given his veto of the White Sox trade), why wouldn’t he be willing to go to the Phillies? Utley, Hamels and some of the other California boys can talk him into it.
The Phillies have a lot committed over the next couple of years, but they also will be losing a huge chunk of payroll: Thome, Eaton, Jenkins, Park, Eyre & Myers. That’s $36M+ off of their payroll next year. Peavy takes Myers spot & the Phillies have several bullpen arms in the minors that could step in and take over Eyre (e.g. Bastardo, Zagurski or German) & Park’s (pick a name out of a hat) roles. They would be set with a very similar roster in 2010. The questions come in 2011. They may need to replace Moyer, Blanton, Feliz, Ruiz & Werth? I’m confident the Phillies will have more than 2 pitching prospects left in the system to replace Moyer & Blanton. The Phillies have depth at the catcher position. With Gose & Collier growing in low-A, I’m confident in the depth in the outfield. 3B is, as always, the big question mark. If they can’t find a replacement within, I’m confident they can sign an affordable free agent as a replacement (maybe Feliz again). Carrasco, Drabek, Marson & Donald for Peavy – Let’s get this done!

Well, if ESPN said it, it must be true… :-)

When does Brett Favre come out of retirement???

@ Graham.

Isn’t Blanton a free-agent after this season as well?

The Phillies have what it takes to get Peavy, but they should be careful how they approach this. They can spare Donald and maybe a few of the pitching prospects, but they should be careful to not give up the farm, as sparse as it is. Certain players should be out of the conversation (Marson, Carrasco, Brown, Taylor) completely. Marson and Carrasco could be contributing as soon as September.
I think the biggest obstacle is the current payroll. I can’t see the Phillies management agreeing to adding another 11 million in 2009. Maybe if he is still available in the offseason.

I don’t get the whole “playing for a team that’s too far away from home”. Not your fault, Todd! I hear that a lot from players. Unless you’re playing for your home team, you’re never any way!

And pitchers need to get over that, *hitters ballpark* mind-set. If he played for the Phils, he would have an advantage in it being a *home* hitters park. It’s not all about THEIR numbers! It’s a TEAM sport!

j42justin – Blanton has one more year of arbitration.

Regarding Peavy’s home/away splits:
He would be replacing Myers.
Myers splits for 2006-2008
Home: 3.42 ERA, 1.19 WHIP
Away: 5.05 ERA, 1.47 WHIP

Sometimes, pitchers just pitch better at home.
Plus, Peavy is a power pitcher. He has 1325 career SOs in 1322.1 IP. And, he’s a year younger than Myers.

I certainly think it’s worthy of discussion.

The one thing that rankles me, however, is the Citizen’s Bank Ballpark stuff. Sure, it’s hitter-friendly, but the Phillies line-up is hitter-friendly too. Who wouldn’t want to pitch in front of those guys? Not to mention the defense, which should be another selling point for coming here.

As far as prospects, I say: Deal them. That’s the nature of prospects – they come along again, just like an appetite. Draft more kids. Peavy’s don’t come along as often as prospects, so when the chance arrives, grab it.

This would be a bad deal. Peavy is on his way down, not up. He will be a non-factor in two or three years, therefore not worth $30MM+ in salary plus prospects. Besides all that, haven’t we scooped up enough Padres offal in Andy Asby and Adam Eaton? How many times do you put your hand in the fire before you realize it hurts?

Hey, I’m all for it, and I don’t give a hoot who you give away. Give ‘em Donald, Carrasco, and either one of the catchers. Throw Blanton in for good measure. Peavy’s only 28. In 4 years he’ll only be 32. That’s not old. Maddux was a Cy Young winner at 32. Which one of the prospects in the minors can give you what Peavy will give you over the next 4 years. Donald may not start (I think we have another option at 2nd base over the next 4 years); Carrasco still shows me nothing. And by the time Carlos Ruiz is done, Marson will be too. Unless you think he’s the next Bench. Is he? Any guarantees? Peavy’s a lock. You already know what he can do. I’m trying to imagine a rotation of Peavy, Hamels, and Meyers one-two-three. I’ll always take something I know over something I think MIGHT

Hey, I’m all for it, and I don’t give a hoot who you give away. Give ‘em Donald, Carrasco, and either one of the catchers. Throw Blanton in for good measure. Peavy’s only 28. In 4 years he’ll only be 32. That’s not old. Maddux was a Cy Young winner at 32. Which one of the prospects in the minors can give you what Peavy will give you over the next 4 years. Donald may not start (I think we have another option at 2nd base over the next 4 years); Carrasco still shows me nothing. And by the time Carlos Ruiz is done, Marson will be too. Unless you think he’s the next Bench. Is he? Any guarantees? Peavy’s a lock. You already know what he can do. I’m trying to imagine a rotation of Peavy, Hamels, and Meyers one-two-three. I’ll always take something I know over something I think MIGHT be.
Get me Peavy. Let’s see…Hamels v. Santana; Peavy v. …who?

Would the Padres really consider giving up Peavy for Carrasco, Donald & Marson? While all 3 are considered top prospects, their current trade value is probably at an alltime low…Donald .238-1, Marson .191-0, Carrasco 0-5 6.31.

Todd, you aren’t crazy! Your blog gives us a very clear break down of the possibility of Peavy coming to Philly to pitch. And for all the reasons you listed at the end, I doubt it’ll happen. But it shouldn’t stop us from dreaming!

Who would you rather have right now? Peavy? Or, I hate to say it, Moyer?

Forget Peavy. We got Myers. Great game!
And there was a decidedly Phillie sound in the stands at Yankee Stadium tonight.

I agree! Brett was brilliant! Have ANY of our starters gone 8? I think not!

im all in favor of adding a guy like peavy to the rotation. as for the guy who metioned eaton and ashby in the same paragraph as peavy, you can’t be serious dude

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