ESPN's Gordon Edes first tweeted of the Cards' interest in Peavy on Monday, writing:
Cardinals parachuted in yesterday to scout Peavy. Remember they had a lot of interest in him at deadline last season— Gordon Edes (@GordonEdes) July 7, 2014
Peter Gammons followed on Tuesday morning with a tweet that he was hearing the same rumblings:
w/Garcia in surgery, Gonzalez optioned, Wacha out, I hear what Gordon Edes hears:Cardinals want Jake Peavy— Peter Gammons (@pgammo) July 8, 2014
So there's Cardinals-induced smoke emanating from Boston.
The Cardinals rotation is seemingly rounding back into shape after a spate of injuries—Jaime Garcia and Michael Wacha were placed on the DL on the same day—weakened the organization's options to such a degree that it felt compelled to promote 2013 first-rounder Marco Gonzales after just seven starts above A-ball to fill the fifth spot. On Monday, Garcia announced to the club and media (simultaneously, mind you) that he will undergo season-ending surgery to correct thoracic outlet syndrome (a turn of events that has apparently motivated the Cardinals organization to take the low road in the matter). Meanwhile, the Cardinals announced that Wacha has been prescribed at least two more weeks of rest for his injured throwing shoulder. On Monday, the club demoted Gonzales to Triple-A and promoted lefty Tyler Lyons to bolster the bullpen. It appears that righty Joe Kelly has rounded back into shape and is the most likely candidate to start Friday's game in Milwaukee.
It appears that, as of Friday, the Cardinals starting rotation will be:
Would Peavy even be an upgrade at this point in his career over any of the five pitchers the Cardinals will have slotted into the rotation come Friday? Per Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak had this to say on the subject:
"We feel very confident that those five can be successful," Mozeliak said. "There are probably very few pitchers we can go out and acquire without having to give up one of those (pitchers) to begin with. That would make it problematic. We feel pretty good about where we are from a pitching standpoint. ...
"We’re not going to make a bad decision just in a panic situation."
At the age of 33 and in the final year of his contract, Peavy would appear to be one of the pitchers that the Cardinals might be able to acquire without giving up a current member of the starting rotation or a highly-touted prospect—especially with his dwindling effectiveness. Peavy has that veteran proveyness that managers like Mike Matheny love, but over the last couple of season's Peavy has proven himself a mediocrity. This year, he's been downright bad. Peavy has posted the lowest K rate of his career, the highest walk rate, a 4.64 ERA (113 ERA-) and 4.81 FIP (119 FIP-). Throw in Peavy's checkered injury history and I'm left wondering why the Cardinals would have any interest other than performing due diligence.
ESPN's Jayson Stark has joined the chorus of folks singing Peavy-to-St. Louis rumors.