Thoughts on the Red Sox’s Trade for Jake Peavy

The Red Sox seem to be getting pretty positive reviews for the Jake Peavy trade. As a starting point, Alex Speier gives some good preliminary analysis:

it’s worth taking a step back and noting what the Red Sox did not give up. They didn’t part with shortstop Xander Bogaerts (who now has a clear path to that position in Boston for the next few seasons). They did not give up center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. or left-hander Henry Owens or third baseman Garin Cecchini or Will Middlebrooks. They did not give up their top right-handed pitchers in Allen Webster or Brandon Workman or Matt Barnes or Rubby De La Rosa or Anthony Ranaudo.

In other words, the steepest cost to the Red Sox was Jose Iglesias, a player whose extraordinary run in May and June could well represent the zenith of his career. There is a real chance that he will never again make a big league impact over a 45-game stretch that matches what he did with his bat (hitting over .400 while taking walks and showing some extra-base pop) and his glove this year. Moveover, he may well rank behind all of the players on the aforementioned list in terms of prospect value to the Sox.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox now are considerably better positioned for both this season and next as a result of Peavy’s arrival. The 32-year-old represents a solid mid-rotation starter who, in 80 innings this year, was 8-4 with a 4.28 ERA along with an impressive strikeout rate (8.6 per nine innings) and a very modest walk rate (1.9 per nine). That performance follows an 11-12 campaign in which Peavy had a 3.37 ERA with 8.0 strikeouts and 2.0 walks per nine in 219 innings with Chicago.

David Schoenfield also seems to give it a thumbs up:

The Red Sox got to keep all their top prospects and surrendered only slick-fielding Jose Iglesias, who has a superficially good .330/.376/.406 batting line with the Red Sox in 215 at-bats. He’s not close to a .300 hitter, let alone a .330 hitter. A few weeks ago I looked at all his hits and they featured an unsustainable number of infield singles, five-hoppers that sneaked through and bloopers just over the heads of infielders. In July, he’s hitting .205 with one extra-base hit in 83 at-bats and he’s a career .244/.296/.292 hitter in Triple-A in nearly 1,000 plate appearances. But he can pick it at shortstop (or third base, where he’s been playing a lot for the Red Sox) and I suppose there’s a small chance that he could improve at the plate, a la Omar Vizquel.

So good job by Red Sox GM Ben Cherington to sell high on Iglesias, even if Peavy is more of a No. 3-4 starter than a 1 or 2.

Over at Fire Brand, Hunter Golden gives some excellent context for the trade:

To get Garza from the Cubs, the Rangers had to part with Mike Olt (a top 100 prospect). To get Sanchez from the Marlins, the Tigers had to deal Justin Turner (A top 25 Prospect when he was dealt). To get Greinke, the Angels had to part with their 2nd, 4th and 9th best prospects. The Red Sox didn’t even trade anyone in their top 35 and shipped what is (right now) an all glove, no hit SS somewhere else. Factor in the fact that the Red Sox will get Peavy for longer than two months and frankly, this is a bargain when put up against the backdrop of recent deals.

And, as you might expect, Fangraphs has the most comprehensive rundown of how the Red Sox made out in the trade. The quick summary is that “[t]he Red Sox got themselves a good starting pitcher for a year and two months without losing very much of consequence,” but the whole article is worth a read.1

Those are some of the best reactions I have found, but if you want more links about the trade, check out Over the Monster’s daily links for today.


  1. If you want even more information about the prospects involved in the trade, check out the prospect centric writeup from WEEI