Padres fans, better brace yourselves: It's only a matter of time until Peavy is shipped away.
In fact, look closely enough and you'll see that the proposed deal in which the White Sox were to send left-handers Aaron Poreda and Clayton Richard and two other young pitchers -- one believed to be Lance Broadway -- to San Diego might not even be permanently vetoed.
Peavy appeared to leave the door cracked -- ever so slightly -- in his brief comments to reporters in Petco Park on Thursday afternoon.
"As of right now, this is the best place for us to be," Peavy said Thursday afternoon, speaking of himself, wife Katie and the couple's three sons, all of whom are under 8. "We made that decision for the time being."
As of right now? For the time being?
Sounds like the words of a short-timer, which Peavy surely is despite the nixed White Sox deal. While he will start for the Padres against the Chicago Cubs on Friday night in San Diego, there are those who still believe the deal with the White Sox could be resurrected within the next several days.
Failing that, it's clear the Padres remain determined to move him. They are still under a mandate to reduce the payroll to $40 million, and they're currently at about $45 million. Peavy is due $11 million this season, and $63 million through 2013.
Aside from the money, the Padres have regressed so badly on the field that they realize there is more value in the package of players they could obtain for him than in keeping him.
There is no way the club intends to retain Peavy.
What's not so clear is whether Peavy, who owns a full no-trade clause, will be able to steer the deal toward one of his desired destinations -- either in Chicago with the Cubs or in Los Angeles with the Dodgers, according to sources close to the pitcher.
One major league executive with knowledge of the Cubs' ownership maeuverings says that prospective majority owner Tom Ricketts and general manager Jim Hendry have discussed the possibility of acquiring Peavy. But the club's $900 million transition into ownership by the Ricketts family still isn't completed.
Bottom line here is, Peavy's continued presence is becoming a problem.
The Padres have have wasted an ungodly amount of hours since last October in trade conversations.
The growing perception of Peavy is that he's impossible to please and that he's afraid to pitch in the more potent American League (nevermind the fact that he long ago earned his no-trade clause and has every right to tell the Padres to stuff it).
Peavy's camp, understandably sensitive to him being branded the bad guy in Chicago, was not happy that details of the potential deal became public.
"Not only is the public airing of this stuff counter-productive, it's probably destructive," Barry Axelrod, Peavy's agent, told CBSSports.com earlier in the day Thursday.
Axelrod added that to say the fate of this trade was in Peavy's hands "is a simplistic view of it. Approval or disapproval, it's not necessarily in black or white. One thing we talked about six or seven months ago are the considerations that (might) need to be given should Jake agree to a deal."
In other words, depending on how geographically desirable a trade destination is, Peavy could request anything from a cost-of-living allowance to airline tickets for his wife and children to an entirely re-done contract, ala Johan Santana when the New York Mets acquired him from Minnesota two winters ago.