San Diego pitcher Jake Peavy, the Cy Young Award winner currently being dangled in trade talks, initially indicated to the Padres that he would prefer a deal to one of five teams -- Atlanta, St. Louis, the Chicago Cubs, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Houston Astros.
But because San Diego apparently isn't close to honing in on a deal with any of those five, sources say that the Padres are reaching out to other teams, as well.
Peavy, 27, has a full no-trade clause, and he has not given San Diego any indication that he would accept a deal to the Yankees or any other American League team. But the Padres are in the process of gauging interest from those clubs, as well -- and if they were to identify an offer that they find acceptable, perhaps for a couple of pitchers and a center fielder, officials with other teams sense that San Diego would move quickly to complete a deal.
The Braves are probably the best-equipped team among those named by Peavy to complete a deal. They have young pitching, such as Jair Jurrjens and Tommy Hanson, and center fielders Jason Heyward and Jordan Schafer. Officials with the two clubs have exchanged names, but to date, the Braves have been reluctant to talk about Hanson, Heyward, Schafer or any of their best prospects.
Peavy is attractive for his performance and because he's under contract through 2013. He is set to make $8 million in 2009; $15 million in 2010; $16 million in 2011; and $17 million in 2012. He also has a 2013 option for $22 million, with a $4 million buyout.
The Yankees, who will seek at least two starting pitchers this offseason, have discussed Peavy internally, but Peavy has been open in his preference to play in the National League -- where he can hit and run the bases -- and some friends of the pitcher wonder if he would like playing in New York.
Peavy recently joined Houston ace Roy Oswalt on a Michigan hunting trip, and according to the Houston Chronicle, Peavy said he would happily waive his no-trade clause to join the Astros.
"When I talk to Roy, we understand the importance of pitching," Peavy said, according to the newspaper. "I think he wants some established pitching help. Not saying they don't have established pitching, but obviously he's lobbying me [saying], 'Hey, man, would you waive your no-trade to play in Houston?' and 'certainly,' I tell him."
Buster Olney is a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine.