Goatriders of the Apocalypse

On the off chance that three trade rumor posts a day aren't enough...

Here's the latest.

Robothal:

In the first big showdown of the offseason, it's the Braves vs. the Cubs for Padres right-hander Jake Peavy.

Both teams continued to target Peavy as the general managers' meetings concluded Thursday, and the Padres' discussions with the Cubs could be expanded to include a third team, according to major-league sources.

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The details of the Cubs' proposal are not known and likely are fluid. The Padres could spin one or more of the players they would receive from the Cubs to get additional pieces from another team, sources said.

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The Padres are seeking young pitching in any deal for Peavy, who has a full no-trade clause but has informed the club that he is willing to go one of five National League teams. The Yankees and Angels will become viable options only if the Padres fail to reach agreement with one of Peavy's preferred clubs, but such a scenario appears unlikely.

Peavy almost certainly would require some type of inducement to approve any deal. At minimum, he probably would ask for a full no-trade clause for the rest of his contract. He also could ask for a team to guarantee his $22 million option for 2013, or provide some other type of compensation. Padres general manager Kevin Towers said Wednesday that Peavy has established different criteria for different teams.

The Braves are not going to trade their top pitching prospect for Peavy. The Padres desire young pitching.

More from Towers:

He said that the Jake Peavy trade talks have progressed to a point where the pitcher has been told he’s going to be traded, it’s just a matter of when a deal is struck.

“That train has left the station,” Tower said.

Towers also revealed that he is dealing with three teams, all in the National League. He mentioned the possibility of Peavy moving as part of a multi-team trade.

The Padres are known to be dealing with the Braves and Cubs. The third team could be the Cardinals or Astros. The Yankees are not in the mix.

"It’s been narrowed down for quite a while and there have been no additions,” Towers said.

For those of you wondering how or why a Peavy deal is going down, this should clarify some things:

Padres CEO Sandy Alderson reiterated Wednesday that the payroll hasn't been set for 2009, but Alderson did not dismiss the possibility that it could be near $40 million, the ballpark figure players told The San Diego Union-Tribune in August.

“We've discussed everything from something in that range to something higher,” Alderson said.

The club opened last season with a $73 million payroll.

Ace pitcher Jake Peavy, the subject of recent trade talks with the Braves, Cubs and Dodgers, is guaranteed an $11 million salary for 2009. That would chew up nearly 30 percent of a $40 million payroll. Peavy's salary will jump to $15 million in 2010.

Cutting Peavy would go a long way toward getting those salary figures down. Another $6.5 million could be cleared by trading shortstop Khalil Greene. There has been some chatter about Greene being packaged with Peavy, although apparently the Braves aren't interested.

Padres AGM Paul Depodesta blogs about trade rumors, obviously not saying much concrete about Peavy's situation.

All this talk

about Peavy makes me more and more concerned that the whiff machine will stay in the leadoff spot.

Hendry should realize that getting a legit leadoff man is as big a priority as he has.

I thought your

leadoff guy was supposed to be a stolen base threat as well. I guess the Cubs think 19 SB a year is good enough of a threat. I might be going out on a limb here by saying that's not in Soriano's deck of cards any longer. Just a guess on my part. Really, I'm just grasping at straws here. I could be making things up. But really, even when his legs were healthy, did you ever catch yourself saying....wow, look at him go!! Did he ever beat out a slow grounder?

19 steals in 109 games = 29

19 steals in 109 games = 29 steals in 162.

The more important figure is times caught - he was caught 3 times, which is a good ratio.

Soriano's career

stolen base stats are (248SB with 69CS), which is a caught stealing ratio of 28%.

Which is not good, although

Which is not good, although 44 of his 69 times caught stealing came from 3 seasons, 2 of which were at the start of his career.

As a Cub, Soriano has stolen 38 bases and been caught 9 times, which means he has a success rate of 81%.

Since 2003 - aka the past 5 seasons - Soriano has stolen 162 bases (an average of 32 per year) and has been caught 41 times, giving him a success rate of 79.8%.

All that said, while I don't think it's fair to say he's "lost" his speed or his ability to steal bases, I would agree that he's no leadoff hitter and the Cubs need to look elsewhere.

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