HOUSTON -- Jake Peavy became the hottest name on the trade market before the World Series has even started, but it's possible that his future destination could be decided well ahead of the official start of the Hot Stove season.
Major League sources told MLB.com that Peavy is strongly believed to be drawing the most interest from the Dodgers and the Braves, and that a deal could be completed in the very near future, possibly in the next week.
The Padres, looking for a cost-cutting move as they maintain a shrinking payroll, began shopping Peavy soon after the regular season concluded. Peavy, who is signed through 2013 and has a full no-trade clause, cited the Braves, Cardinals, Cubs, Dodgers and Astros as teams he'd consider, according to ESPN.com. The report also said that the Padres are gauging interest from other clubs in case they can't come to an agreement with Peavy's top five choices.
Peavy's first choice, according to the MLB.com source, is Houston, but it is unlikely that the Astros have enough Minor League talent to offer the Padres, who are seeking starting pitching and, possibly, a center fielder.
Peavy, who will turn 28 on May 31, is to be paid $8 million in 2009, $15 million in 2010, $16 million in 2011 and $17 million in 2012. The contract also includes a club option for 22 million in 2013, with a buyout worth $4 million.
Alyson Footer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.