The Sox hold a $22 million option for 2013 or they must pay Peavy $4 million on the way out the door. The Sox will decline the option year, but that does not mean they won’t negotiate a new deal for less money and more years.
“I really have not thought about it,” he said. “I have just wanted to stay focused here. I don’t know it depends on if these guys want me back. It depends on what they value me as. I really have not had any (talks) with them.”
At 32, Peavy will look for his last long-term deal with market value likely fetching him $12 million to $15 million on a two- or three-year deal. The Sox may be looking to go younger in their rotation and use some of the Peavy cash for that purpose.
After two-plus injury-riddled seasons with the Sox, Peavy made 30 starts and pitched over 200 innings for the first time since 2007 when he won the NL Cy Young award with the San Diego Padres. He enters Tuesday’s game with just 11 wins, but likely would have had 16 or 17 wins with decent run support.
Peavy has enjoyed his Chicago experience.
“It has been a rollercoaster ride for me,” Peavy said. “I got over here hurt, helped out a bit late at the end of 2009 and 2010, began the season behind the eight-ball with a bad arm and then had a pretty major injury (a torn lat muscle) that caused me to miss the rest of 2010. It was a tough few first years, but to come back and be healthy and take the ball every turn like I had before I got here is gratifying.”
Peavy will be facing free agency without longtime friend and agent Barry Axelrod, who must give up his representation of baseball players to accept an offer to work in the front office of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Peavy is not sure if he will represent himself or hire a new agent.
But he is certain that he wants to play as long as possible.
“I am going to play for as long as they let me wear a uniform,” he said. “My boys are getting to an age where they understand and enjoy what daddy does. That is something that is special to me and to them. You miss a lot by being away, but if I play another five years I will only be 36 and be able to spend a lot of quality time with them.”