Toronto made a huge splash this offseason, but general manager Alex Anthopoulos has hinted that he was close to pulling off another big move that fell through. According to Shi Davidi of SportsNet that move would have been trading for White Sox right-hander Jake Peavy.
Peavy had a $22 million team option that the White Sox declined with a $4 million buyout on the way to re-signing him to a two-year, $29 million deal. Davidi reports that the Blue Jays would have acquired Peavy and exercised the $22 million option, but it’s unclear what the White Sox would have gotten in return.
Peavy admitted to Davidi that he “did hear rumblings from different people” at the time and “knew there was stuff going on and I knew it was between two teams.” Instead the Blue Jays went on to make their blockbuster trade with the Marlins and snag R.A. Dickey from the Mets, and Peavy has a 3.93 ERA and 24/1 K/BB ratio through three starts for the White Sox.
Cubs owner Tom Ricketts met the media in Mesa, Arizona today and said a couple of things that were fun.
First, he addressed the controversy that arose earlier this month when emails of his father’s — family patriarch Joe Ricketts — were leaked, showing him forwarding and approvingly commenting on racist jokes. Ricketts apologized for those serving as a “distraction” for the Cubs which, OK. He also said “Those aren’t the values our family was raised with… I never heard my father say anything remotely racist.” If you choose to believe that a 77-year-old conservative guy who loves racist emails — who once spearheaded an anti-Obama ad campaign that required a “literate African-American” as its spokesman — hasn’t said racist stuff a-plenty, that’s between you and your credulity.
More relevant to the 2019 Cubs is this:
The Cubs aren’t in the same position as some other contenders in that (a) they don’t have a cheap payroll; and (b) are not obvious candidates for the big free agents like Harper or Machado, but I still find that comment pretty rich for an owner of one of baseball’s marquee franchises in a non-salary cap league. If nothing else, it’s an admission by Ricketts that he, like the other owners, consider the Luxury Tax to be a defacto salary cap.