Player to Be Named Later: Here, Peavy Peavy
Word has it that 2007 Cy Young winner Jake Peavy is coming to the White Sox from the Padres. The Peavs has a no-trade clause, so even though the Sox have permission to ask Peavy to the dance, they still don't know if he likes them likes them. If all goes to plan, that's a pretty amazing 1-2, righty/lefty combo at the top of the rotation with Peavy and Buehrle. It doesn't solve three through five, though one would think (hope/pray/suppress-reasonable-doubt) Gavin Floyd will snap out of it at some point. I'm impressed that nothing has leaked yet about who the Sox would give up, though speculation includes top pitching prospect Aaron Poreda and top position prospect Gordon Beckham, who are both doing well down in Double-A right now.
There are those who will ask if this, even with two top starters, is a team that could win it all. Fair enough. There are spare parts all over the field. Alexei Ramirez looks like a one-and-done. Josh Fields is playing worse than Joe Crede's herniated disc. Zombie Scott Podsednik is back, people. And don't look now, but someone's disturbed Carl Everett's grave. Even with Peavy, the Sox won't win it in 2009. The roster just isn't up to it. But for a relatively fair price, Peavy is signed through 2012, which means the Sox have a chance to get a marquee pitcher, dump some of those albatross salaries, and then use Peavy's cachet to lure some more talent to win in the next couple of years.
It's difficult to evaluate the trade without knowing what we're giving up, but at first glance it seems to be a pretty standard case of now vs. the future. Kenny Williams has always shown himself to be a man of the here-and-now, who mostly treats prospects as breadcrumbs to lure veterans. While a season like this one—wherein the Sox have no one but Jayson Nix to call up and mend their wounds—shows just how bankrupt a long-term philosophy this can be for a mid-market team, this isn't really a case of lusting after Darin Erstad. Peavy is one of the top hurlers in the game. And Williams has a history of letting go of mouth-watering prospects who never actually solidify (Chris B. Young has burned my fantasy team three too many times), so I trust his instincts on this. I can't believe I just said that.