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Red Sox, White Sox, Tigers finalize three-team Jake Peavy deal

Jul 30, 2013, 10:37 PM EDT

It’s official. The Red Sox have acquired Jake Peavy from the White Sox and reliever Brayan Villarreal from the Tigers as part of a three-team trade. The Tigers picked up shortstop Jose Iglesias from Boston. The White Sox are getting outfielder Avisail Garcia from the Tigers and three lower level prospects from the Red Sox: shortstop Cleuluis Rondon, RHP Francellis Montas and RHP Jeffrey Wendelken.

The addition of Peavy, who is owed $14.5 million next year, gives Boston added protection in case Clay Buchholz struggles to return from his neck problems down the stretch. It’s expensive insurance, though, with no guarantee that Peavy is much of an upgrade over Ryan Dempster or Felix Doubront in a projected four-man postseason rotation that also includes Buchholz, Jon Lester and John Lackey. Of course, the Red Sox have to worry about reaching the postseason first.

Peavy is 8-4 with a 4.28 ERA and a 76/17 K/BB ratio over 80 innings in 13 starts this season. He missed time earlier in the year with a broken rib. His biggest problem has been the home run ball  — he’s allowed 14 — but switching from U.S. Cellular to Fenway will help there.

Iglesias, a Rookie of the Year candidate who was hitting .330/.377/.409 in 215 at-bats for the Red Sox, makes a great deal of sense for Detroit with Jhonny Peralta facing a Biogenesis suspension of at least 50 games. He gives the Tigers the rangy shortstop they need to put next to Miguel Cabrera, and while Peralta may get his job back at the very end of the year, there’s little doubt that it’ll be Iglesias next year, with Peralta presumably moving on in free agency.

The 22-year-old Garcia was talked up last year as a big piece of the Tigers’ future. His resemblance to Cabrera in the batter’s box probably helped in that regard. This year, he had hit .382/.414/.549 in 144 at-bats in Triple-A, but just .241/.273/.373 in 83 at-bats in the majors, and the Tigers deemed him expendable with fellow outfield prospect Nick Castellanos also knocking on the door. Plate discipline is an issue for Garcia, and while scouts expect his power to come, his high home run total in six minor league seasons is 14. Whether the White Sox use him right away could hinge on an Alex Rios deal. For now, though, he’s been optioned to Triple-A Charlotte.

The departure of Iglesias makes third base a question mark for Boston, fueling rumors that a deal for the Phillies’ Michael Young could follow. Barring a trade, the Red Sox will have to decide whether to promote Will Middlebrooks, Brock Holt or No. 1 prospect Xander Bogaerts from Triple-A to pair with or, more likely, start over Brandon Snyder at third. Bogaerts, a natural shortstop, is outhitting Middlebrooks in Triple-A, but he’s played just five games at third since getting a look there earlier in the month. The Red Sox also now have to weigh in the fact that Bogaerts is again clearly the shortstop of the future with Iglesias gone.

Villarreal, going from Detroit to Boston, has a 4.56 ERA and an 86/46 K/BB ratio in 75 innings as a major leaguer. He seemed to be on his way to emerging as a key piece in the Tigers bullpen last year, but control became an especially big problem late and he was left off the postseason roster. This year has been a disaster for him, but the fresh start could do him some good. He throws 94-98 mph, so he has some upside as a short reliever.

None of the prospects going from Boston to Chicago were viewed as key pieces of the Red Sox system. Rondon, 19, was hitting .276/.326/.350 in short-season ball. Montas, 20, was 2-9 with a 5.70 ERA and a 96/32 K/BB ratio in 85 1/3 innings as a starter for low Single-A Greenville. Wendelken, 20, had a 2.77 ERA and a 54/20 K/BB ratio in 65 innings as a reliever in low-A ball.

  1. psousa1 - Jul 31, 2013 at 8:53 AM

    As a Sox fan I guess I am happy to get Peavy. I will miss watching this kid Iglesias play defense. If you are a Tiger fan you are going to be f-ing amazed watching this kid play SS. Amazed. He has been playing 3B too and is probably the best defensive 3B in the AL. There is nothing he cannot do defensively. He is about a 300% upgrade, defensively, over Peralta. I was looking forward to seeing Boegaards at 3b and Iglesias at SS for years to come.


  2. drewsylvania - Jul 31, 2013 at 9:45 AM

    Iglesias and three lottery tickets for Peavy and Villarreal. Probably an even deal. All three of the low-level prospects have potential, while Peavy isn’t an ace or even a #2. One stat glares off the page–14HR allowed in 80IP. Now, I know that Fenway suppresses homers, but sheesh.

    Villarreal looks pretty good actually. He could be key bullpen depth.

    I guess Iglesias himself is a bit of a lottery ticket. Huge defensive talent, yet throwing errors, and despite the run this year, the bat is probably still a liability. He hit very few liners despite the gaudy BA. And he might have an attitude problem (said this before the trade)–he’s failed to hustle a couple times & loafed in AAA when sent down.

    Gamble by Boston, but not one that would hurt them this year.

  3. hitdog042 - Jul 31, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Montas is going to be a good closer eventually I predict. He won’t be a starter in MLB. He throws 100 mph but that’s all he’s got. He is the interesting guy in this trade

  4. hitdog042 - Jul 31, 2013 at 9:57 AM

    People need to pay attention. Lester has 3 consecutive good starts. Peavy is an upgrade over Dempster when it comes down to that when Bucholz is back. This trade strengthened both teams. This trade was not about Brandon Workman. This trade was about insurance for clay then upgrading the back of the rotation (Dempster). Don’t read into what Peavys era is in Chicago. They are a bad team. His HR ratio will drop in Boston and with Victorino in RF his era will be lower.

  5. drewsylvania - Jul 31, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Hitdog–I’d call that the optimistic appraisal. We don’t know when Buchholz is back. And 14HR in 80IP can’t be saved by Victorino or Fenway.

  6. joerymi - Jul 31, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    This could very well be a trade like the Yankees-Tigers-D’backs of a few years ago, where everyone comes out happy.

    I think it is great for Detroit, good for Red Sox, good for the White Sox.

    Villarreal is better than his numbers, he has “stuff.” He might be a plesant surprise for the Red Sox.

    Iglesias will be huge for that infield defense. Porcello is a happy man today.

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