As many of you know, I have been writing positional reviews/previews for the Atlanta Braves. With the position players done, I began working on the starting rotation. I was almost finished with the article, and had made Jake Peavy a large part of the Braves preview for 2009, as it seemed extremely likely that he would be the ace of the Braves staff.
However, upon returning from class this afternoon, I saw a report that the Braves were no longer actively pursuing the Padres pitcher. GM Frank Wren said, “We’ve notified the Padres that we’re moving on to pursue other opportunities and players. We’re no longer actively pursuing Jake Peavy. We have other options out there.”
While I would love to have Jake Peavy as the staff ace this year, I was beginning to wonder whether the Braves would be giving up too much. Originally, the deal would have been for three players, but, eventually, the Padres were expecting at least four players.
The latest reported trade would involve Yunel Escobar, Gorkys Hernandez, Charlie Morton/Jo-Jo Reyes and Blaine Boyer/Jeff Locke/another minor league pitcher.
Although it appears the Braves no longer have interest, that might not be the case. Wren could simply be holding out and hoping that the Padres will eventually lower their price.
San Diego has to cut payroll, and Peavy has to go. Unless other teams step in (the Cubs have seemingly fallen out of the race), the Padres will have to lower their asking price.
The top three free agents the Braves will pursue will be Derek Lowe, Ryan Dempster, and A.J. Burnett. With multiple free agents on the market, it appears the Braves will go that route if the Padres refuse to lower their demands for Peavy.
At this point, I believe that the Braves are simply waiting for the Padres to lower their asking price when they realize that the demand for Peavy is only so high. I believe the Braves are still the frontrunners to land him, but it may take longer than originally anticipated.