CHICAGO -- The San Diego Padres say the Cubs are still interested in trading for right-hander Jake Peavy. The Cubs, however, insist they would need to be very creative with their finances and get another team involved to swing a deal.
San Diego general manager Kevin Towers said on Wednesday night he talked to Chicago GM Jim Hendry earlier in the day and said "[the Cubs] still have interest [in Peavy]."
The Cubs aren't too strong of a player after re-signing right-hander Ryan Dempster to a four-year, $52 million contract on Tuesday. The starting rotation was the No. 1 priority and now includes Dempster, Carlos Zambrano, Ted Lilly, Rich Harden and Jason Marquis.
Because of escalating contract commitments to players and because the team's ownership situation is in flux, the Cubs don't have much room in their 2009 budget for Peavy and have other issues to address. The team is in the market for a left-handed-hitting outfielder and a veteran reliever.
A source told MLB.com earlier on Wednesday that the Cubs headed into the offseason knowing they could either sign Dempster or acquire Peavy, but not afford both pitchers.
If Towers could get another team involved, then perhaps Peavy could come to Chicago. The right-hander has a hefty price tag. He will make $11 million in 2009 and is owed $63 million over the remainder of his contract.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.