CLEVELAND — Jake Peavy finds it crazy he could be reunited with his former general manager and his former agent in Arizona.
On Tuesday, the Arizona Diamondbacks — now headed by Kevin Towers, who was Peavy’s GM in San Diego — emerged as another serious suitor in the Peavy Sweepstakes.
Peavy’s longtime agent until he left the business late last year, Barry Axelrod, is also a member of Arizona’s front office.
As of Tuesday afternoon the Diamondbacks were reportedly looking to move pitcher Ian Kennedy in order to take on some of the $20 million-plus Peavy is owed through 2014.
It’s no surprise to see Towers make an effort to land Peavy. He’s had a strong connection with the right-hander since the two met in the minor leagues after the Padres selected Peavy in the 15th round of the 1999 draft.
“As a young player, he was mature beyond his years,” Towers said in February. “When I saw him in the minor leagues he was like a young Greg Maddux. He was seeing things at 18 and 19 years old that some 24 and 25 year olds don’t see. What a hitter’s doing, very smart.”
Peavy’s winning attitude is an aspect of his makeup Towers has always appreciated. Towers — who traded Peavy to the White Sox for four players in 2009 when the Padres were forced to cut payroll — believes it's one of the reasons Peavy has succeeded, despite the fact he’s not built like a prototypical starting pitcher.
“Jake never thought there was a ballclub out there that he couldn’t beat,” Towers said. “That’s the way he was in the minor leagues and that’s what made him great. He just really believed in his stuff and himself. He loved the game. Student of the game. Well spoken. Loved to go out and compete when he crossed that line. He’s a fun guy in the clubhouse. He’d bring his guitar and play music. Very cerebral, smart. Jake’s bright.”
Peavy is still a member of the White Sox and is excited about the prospect of staying. He’s focused on Wednesday’s start when he is set to face the Cleveland Indians.
But if he goes to Arizona, Peavy wouldn’t have any issues with his new team.
“Those are my friends,” Peavy said. “I speak to those guys. I know what’s going on there and I’m a fan of the Arizona Diamondbacks because I have close friends who are part of that organization, team. It would be crazy if that was to happen. It would certainly be a place I think I’d be comfortable because of the relationships I have but at the same time I’m right here right now and excited to be and we’ll see how it all plays out and go from there.”