The MLB trade deadline is quickly approaching, and the San Francisco Giants have been linked to several starting pitchers around the league. Without much cap flexibility and without many intriguing prospects, the Giants are somewhat strapped and might have a difficult time acquiring a big-name pitcher such as Tampa Bay Rays pitcher David Price, New York Mets pitcher Bartolo Colon, or Philadelphia Philles pitcher Cliff Lee.
However, the idea of the Giants trying to acquire Boston Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy has started to float around in trade rumors. A trade for Peavy would probably make more sense for the Giants than trying to trade for another starting pitcher for several reasons.
First of all, the Giants could use another reliable starting pitcher, especially since Matt Cain was put on the DL again. Peavy is a veteran pitcher, and he’s familiar with the NL West, having played with the San Diego Padres at the beginning of his career. In 19 starts this year, Peavy has a 4.59 ERA, but moving to a pitcher-friendly park like AT&T Park might help that stat.
In Cain’s absence, the Giants have been using Yusmeiro Petit, the Giants’ long reliever, as the spot starter. He’s filled in fairly well, but his command is pretty inconsistent. This is another argument for why the Giants should look to add more starting pitching depth, especially if Cain is on the DL for a long period of time.
Second, Peavy is a personal favorite of Bruce Bochy, who was his manager with the Padres during his prime years. The Giants tried to acquire Peavy last season, to the delight of Bochy, but were not able to pull off a trade.
Third, a trade for Peavy would make more sense financially for the Giants than a trade for Price, Lee, or Colon. Although Peavy is making $14.5 million this year, he won’t pitch enough innings to qualify for the $15 million option he has for next season. This is good for the Giants since they have some cap flexibility this season, but they also don’t want to take on too much salary next season when they will be committed to $125 million in salaries.
The main problem with this possible trade goes back to the Giants’ lack of prospects. If the Red Sox are willing to trade Peavy, they will want outfield prospects in return. The Giants don’t really have any intriguing outfielders in their minor league system, especially since Gary Brown hasn’t lived up to the high expectations that the Giants had for him.
The other problem with this possible trade is that the St. Louis Cardinals are expected to make a strong push at acquiring Peavy and have better assets to offer than the Giants do.