You got to like the decision by Padres ace Jake Peavy to decline the proposed deal to the Chicago White Sox. The presence of the former Cy Young Award winner is one of the few good reasons to venture down to Petco Park (first baseman Adrian Gonzalez is another) and his refusal to move to the south side of Chicago (where is Bad, Bad Leroy Brown on a Friday?) keeps the Padres from making a very ill-advised trade.

Dealing a stud ace like Peavy for four unproven commodities reminds me of some of the bad Padres’ deals of the past (sending George Hendrick to St. Louis for Eric Rasmussen; trading Mike Hargrove to Cleveland for Paul Dade and giving away Fred McGriff to Atlanta for Melvin Nieves and two other stiffs) and the Peavy deal with the White Sox might have someday been viewed the same way.

I used to cover the Padres’ quest for a new ballpark before Petco Park was approved and I can remember looking club owner John Moores in the eyes in his Del Mar office as he told me the team needed the new downtown ballpark and its revenue streams so it would be able to keep its good players, whereas they wouldn’t be able to do that if the team stayed in Qualcomm Stadium.

Hmmmm, here is one of the best pitchers in franchise history in the prime of his career and he’s signed below the going rate for pitchers of his caliber and the team is trying to unload him. Of course, I learned a long time ago that team owners/executives aren’t very good at telling the truth so it’s not a total surprise that we sit here in 2009 seeing a much different course of action than originally promised.

 Moores mandated a $40 million payroll for this season because of his messy divorce situation and it appears putting a quality team on the field is the least of his concerns. Hopefully, new owner Jeff Moorad will show he has some juice (or use a different term if you prefer) to tell Moores he’s not interested in seeing one of the team’s few quality players booted out of town.

Peavy wants to be in San Diego and is one of the few products of a very, very underachieving farm system. In addition to being an All-Star pitcher, he’s very much a class guy.

Good job Jake in enacting your right to decline the trade. Too bad the organization you play for doesn’t want to win as much as you do.


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