Boston Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy has been around Major League Baseball long enough to know how things work.
Peavy has been the subject of trade rumors amid the Red Sox’s struggles, with reports surfacing Tuesday stating that the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves are among those interested in the 33-year-old. Peavy isn’t ready to close the book on his Red Sox tenure just yet, but he’s certainly keeping things in perspective with the July 31 trade deadline just over three weeks away.
“My job is to pitch for the Red Sox,” Peavy told the Boston Herald before Monday night’s game against the Chicago White Sox at Fenway Park. “That’s what I hope continues to happen. I want to be here. I want to turn things around with this group of guys.”
Peavy has had a difficult season, posting a 1-7 record and 4.64 ERA through 18 starts. The right-hander has been victimized by a lack of run support several times, but, by his own admission, he hasn’t met expectations, leading to speculation regarding his future in Boston.
The Red Sox plan to call up a pitcher — likely Rubby De La Rosa — to start Wednesday’s game against the White Sox. That has added fuel to the intensifying trade rumors, as it’s been reported that the Cardinals have long coveted Peavy and would like to add starting pitching.
Peavy has heard it all, especially since he’s already been dealt twice in his 13-year career.
“We answer questions when asked about it. We certainly are kept abreast through our representation and good dialogue with the front office and to have an idea what’s going on with your situation,” Peavy told reporters before Tuesday’s game. “But at the end of the day, it’s not in our control. Put your head down and work. That’s what I’ve done the past few years and if something happens, you get called in and just go from there. At the end of the day, it’s hard for me to comment on any kind of heresy and any kind of rumors. It is what it is. My head is here.”
There’s been plenty of chatter about whether the Red Sox, who entered Tuesday’s game with a 39-50 record, might become sellers before the deadline if things continue to spiral out of control. If that ends up being the case, Peavy could be a prime target for a team in the National League because he enjoyed a lot of success with the San Diego Padres for parts of eight seasons from 2002 to 2009.
For now, Peavy is focused on his current team and the relationship he has developed with the city of Boston.
“I’ve said it since I’ve got here,” Peavy said. “This place, being in this room, is home to me. There’s a lot of people here in the year that I’ve spent here in Boston that are very, very special to me and that’s on the field and off the field. When you experience what we all got a chance to go through last year, you become extremely tight.
“And when you go through times like these, you find out who your buddies are and who’s with you and who’s in your corner. I love this place and I’ve said that since spring training — I’ve always wanted to be here.”
While new reports continue to surface, the one common thread is that there’s reportedly some level of interest in Peavy despite his lackluster 2014 campaign. That’s typically how things work when you’re a three-time All-Star and former Cy Young winner in the midst of a contract year on a last-place team.