I have stated time and again that I love the offseason in baseball. I love all the crazy rumors, I love laughing at the bonehead deals GMs offer in an attempt to save their hides and I love the wild fan speculation as to what their team is actually going to do. But today I read something that made me flip out and start literally yelling at my laptop. In the interest of full disclosure, I think I should mention that there was no one else in my apartment at the time.
ESPN’s Buster Olney reported that the Padres and Yankees “engaged in conversations at the GM meetings” and that Jake Peavy was “one of the names kicked around.” OK, first of all, Buster, it would be a tantalizing story to jump on if the Padres sent their small town Cy Young winner (I’m assuming the voters aren’t idiots) to the Yankees for Melky Cabrera and some random pitching prospects. I know that’s a story you’d love to break, and you’d be all over and the “Peavy replacing Clemens and doing what Josh Beckett did for the Red Sox” angle. But guess what, if you think the Padres would ever ship Peavy out anywhere, you’re f-ing insane.
Peavy’s name was not “kicked around.” I can tell you right now how that conversation went, ready?
Brian Cashman: Hey Kevin, nice to see you. Maybe we could work a deal. I hear you need some outfield help.
Kevin Towers: Yeah, we’re looking right now. But only for the right deal.
Cashman: Fantastic. Hey would you consider sending us Jake Pea–
Towers: –nice talking to you.
By Olney even saying that Peavy’s name was discussed it starts a chain reaction of people claiming the Padres are looking to move him. It’s disingenuous. The Padres are more likely to relocate to Saskatchewan than they are to move Peavy this offseason. But this crap still happens. I know it’s part of the business, but do you really need to report something like this? I mean we all know that Peavy is going to get calls from friends asking if he’s on the move, if he knows anything, etc. It’s crap and it isn’t even a real rumor.
This is exactly like what happened in July of 2006, when on Baseball Tonight, one of the anchors reported that the Padres and Red Sox were in deep discussions about a Jake Peavy for Mike Lowell deal. They stopped short of calling it imminent, but they implied he was moving. So let me get this straight, the Padres were going to send a then 25-year-old, bona fide No. 1 starter for a then 32-year-old guy in his eighth year who (at the time) had only had two 100+ RBI seasons. Riiiiiight. The funny part is, when asked about that deal Kevin Towers’ actual response was “That’s fu*king bullsh*t,” and he then told Peavy that as long as he was the Padres GM, Peavy was not going anywhere. And that was in the midst of Jake’s worst season as a pro. Why would he move him now after he just won the NL’s triple crown for pitching and should be a unanimous choice for the NL Cy Young?
Then last year an idiot at the Boston Globe wrote this piece of crap about how Manny Ramirez to the Padres for Peavy made sense for everyone involved. Yeah, it made perfect sense … if you were a Red Sox fan.
My point is, all of these potential deals assume that a smaller market team like the Padres would just allow a big market team to walk in and take what they wanted. I mean do you really think Kevin Towers is going to allow himself to be held down while he’s fitted with a gimp mask, then reamed like he just wandered into the wrong shop in Pulp Fiction? Metaphorically speaking.
Me: “Kevin, are you OK?”
Towers: “Naw man. I’m pretty fu*kin’ far from OK.”
Of course he’s not going to do that … at least God I hope not. But fans of big market teams and ESPN “experts” like Mr. Olney and Peter Gammons will continue to report this stuff because it makes big headlines.
Another perfect example of this was the trade talk about Kobe Bryant a few days ago, when Ric Bucher (who I’m convinced knows absolutely nothing) said a three-way deal was close to happening that would have sent Bryant to Chicago, with the Lakers receiving Ron Artest and Ben Wallace in return and P.J Brown and Ben Gordon going to Sacramento. Do you really think the Lakers are that dumb? Sure we’ll take your disgruntled, constantly in trouble problem child and a guy with an obscene monster contract and zero offensive skills for the best player since Michael Jordan, why not? Turns out the only people talking about that deal were the Bulls and Kings. The Lakers were not immediately available for comment because they were laughing their asses off.
So yeah, there’s my rant for the day. Lets just use a little common sense here people. These “reporters” need to stop just saying things to have something to say. Next time could you please have some substance to your work, rather than trying to beat everyone else to the punch?