Poll: Garza Or Peavy?

29-year-old Cubs righty Matt Garza is almost certain to be traded this month.  He owns a 3.17 ERA in 11 starts this year, and hasn't posted an ERA above 4.00 since his rookie season.  He's a little home run prone, but his stats this year are in line with his recent work: a strikeout rate around eight per nine innings, and a walk rate comfortably under three per nine.  He's averaging 93.6 miles per hour on his fastball this month, according to BrooksBaseball.net.  Garza, who has never been signed to a multiyear deal, will have about $3.4MM remaining on his contract at the trade deadline before being eligible for free agency (and ineligible for a qualifying offer from a new team).  He missed a huge chunk of time due to a stress reaction in his elbow and a lat strain, with his 2012 season ending on July 21st and his '13 campaign beginning on May 21st.  Garza has been traded twice before in his career, each time for at least one very well-regarded young player, but he has never made an All-Star team or received a Cy Young vote.

Then there's 32-year-old White Sox righty Jake Peavy, whose availability is less certain.  He's had a decorated career for the Padres and White Sox, winning the 2007 NL Cy Young award and making the All-Star team in '05, '07, and '12.  He posted a 3.37 ERA for the Sox in 32 starts last year, but sits at 4.19 now and had a 4.77 ERA over 2010-11.  Like Garza, he seems good for at least eight strikeouts per nine and an ample amount of home runs allowed, but Peavy's control is notably better.  He recently returned from a 1.5 month layoff due to a non-displaced rib fracture.  It's incredible that Peavy's shoulder has held up as well as it has since May 2011, after he recovered from "experimental surgery to reattach a key tendon" to the rear of it (his surgeon suggested the procedure be named "Jake Peavy surgery.")  As with any pitcher, Peavy has lost some velocity since his 95 mile per hour heyday, working around 91-92 currently.  Peavy signed a team-friendly two-year extension last October.  He'll be owed around $4.8MM at the trade deadline, and then he'll earn $14.5MM in 2014 and would be eligible for a qualifying offer.

Two Chicago righties, perhaps the best available pitchers at the 2013 trade deadline.  Their abilities seem similar.  Garza has a more concerning recent injury history, while Peavy's July 2010 shoulder surgery was groundbreaking.  Garza is younger and throws harder, but Peavy comes with an extra year of control and the potential to recoup a draft pick in 2015.  This leads us to today's poll question…




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