It’s official, the Red Sox have added righthander Jake Peavy to their rotation. He is expected to arrive in Boston later today and could pitch as soon as Thursday.
The three-team, seven-player deal was announced just before midnight.
Jose Iglesias was traded to the Detroit Tigers along with three lower-level prospects. The Sox also obtained Triple A righthander Brayan Villarreal from Detroit.
The Sox sent righthanders J.B. Wendelken and Francelis Montas and infielder Cleuluis Rondon to the White Sox. Chicago also obtained outfielder Avisail Garcia from Detroit.
“We’re really excited to bring Jake here. He’s obviously a proven major league starter. He’s had a ton of success in his career,” Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said. “If there was one thing we could do, if we could pull it off, it’s add a starting pitcher.”
In 45 starts since the beginning of 2012, Peavy has won 19 games and has a 3.61 ERA.
“We’re in a position to compete for a playoff spot and we felt like adding a starting pitcher was one of the most important things we could do,” Cherington said. “This was the deal we thought made the most sense. We just thought that Peavy, of the starting pitches available, was the one that made the most sense to us.”
Peavy has $5.19 million remaining on his contract for this season and is signed for $14.5 million in 2014. The Red Sox are responsible for all of that. That Peavy was not a two-month rental player was part of his appeal.
“That was important,” Cherington said. “If we were going to give up a long-term asset in Iglesias that we were getting someone we would control past this year was important.”
Peavy has a $15 million vesting player option in 2015. He would need to pitch 400 innings from 2013-14 including 190 in 2014 for the option to kick in. Because he has thrown only 80 innings this season, that is unlikely.
The Sox have been negotiating with White Sox for several days but could not find a match. That changed when the Tigers became involved in the conversation and the trade was made just as Tuesday’s game against Seattle was ending.
Adding to their comfort was the familiarity pitching coach Juan Nieves has with Peavy. Nieves is the former bullpen coach of the White Sox and spent four seasons with Peavy there.
The amateur scout who originally signed Peavy for the Padres, Mark Wasinger, is now a special assignment scout for the Red Sox.
The Red Sox will call up an infielder from Triple A Pawtucket to replace Iglesias on the roster. That could be Will Middlebrooks, Brock Holt or 20-year-old Xander Bogaerts, the organization’s top prospect.
Shortstop is a deep position for the Red Sox, who are comfortable with Stephen Drew and have Bogaerts in Triple A. Deven Marrero, a Class A shortstop, was a first-round draft pick in 2012.
“We didn’t go into this July looking or expecting to trade Jose. But it was a relative area of strength to deal from,” Cherington said.
Villarreal is on the disabled list in Triple A with a thumb injury that has healed and will report to Pawtucket. He has 73 games of major league experience over three seasons, only seven this season.
Villarreal had a 2.63 ERA in 50 appearances has season. He struck out 66 over 54 2/3 innings and allowed 38 hits.