On the same day that Jake Peavy was named the American League Pitcher of the Month, the right-handed Sox veteran had a heavy heart before taking the field to watch his teammates lose 6-3 to the Indians on Wednesday night.
The news that Junior Seau was found dead in his Southern California home earlier in the day from what is being called a possible self-inflicted gunshot wound was the talk of the clubhouse, and no one was hit harder than Peavy.
When Peavy came up with San Diego in 2002, Seau was not only the face of the Chargers, but really of all San Diego sports at the time.
"When I got out there, he was larger than life," Peavy said of the long-time linebacker. "He was obviously a great player, and I'm sure he'll be remembered as that. But Junior was a great person and a lot of fun. He was a happy person. When he walked in the room, it changed. Junior Seau in San Diego was larger than life, as he should have been. It's an awfully sad day for any of us who got the chance to know him."
Peavy, who had a home in San Diego until last year, said that he often crossed paths with his friend, with the last time coming this past winter, when he played golf with Seau in the same "circle of friends."
"It certainly brings you back down to understand we are all human beings," Peavy said. "We all go through difficult times and good times as well as the average person does. I just hope people will remember Junior the way I choose to remember him. That's a happy-go-lucky, fun-loving guy who made other people's lives better with the charity work he did, and Junior was an amazing man.
"Just a tough day for anybody who has been around Junior and his family as well. It's just disappointing for anything like this to happen to anybody. Somebody you know and you've been around and shared some good times with, it's a sad day."
As far as the next time Peavy will pitch, that comes Friday.
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