(CBS) – Days after he was minted as the new White Sox general manager, Rick Hahn pulled a move that shocked most of the baseball world – he re-signed starting pitcher Jake Peavy before the right-hander hit free agency.
Peavy, 31, had his best season with the White Sox in 2012 – going 11-12 with a 3.37 ERA in 32 starts.
The move to sign Peavy to a two-year, $29 million extension caught even manager Robin Ventura by surprise.
“I was (surprised.) I was happy, too,” Ventura told The McNeil and Spiegel Show. “I think it’s one of those things that with the year that he had, the chance to go to free agency and go somewhere else – I know a lot of teams wanted him. I heard from around the league of a lot of coaches who would love to have him on their teams. We’re happy to have him back. I was surprised, but happily surprised.”
The opportunity to work with Hahn has been a bonus for Ventura, as the two have developed a strong relationship since Ventura took over as the White Sox skipper last season.
“I have a great relationship with Rick,” Ventura said. “I trust him. He’s doing a lot of great things as far as the communication and the way we’re going about it. But even last year, there was a lot of communication going on with him coming in during the day and sitting with me and the coaches, going over different things. We had a lot of injuries last year, and I think that helps as far as (him) coming in and sitting down and figuring out who we’re bringing up from the minor leagues, how we’re going to use them and things like that. I think both of us are really comfortable communicating with each other (about) our concerns or what we feel needs to happen.”