Jake Peavy can now decide whether he wants to pitch for the Chicago White Sox.
The San Diego Padres have agreed to send the ace to the White Sox, and the teams were waiting to see if Peavy would waive his no-trade clause, a person familiar with the talks told The Associated Press.
The person spoke Thursday on the condition of anonymity because the deal was not finalized.
Peavy's agent, Barry Axelrod, said he hadn't spoken to the 2007 NL Cy Young Award winner since Wednesday afternoon, just before the pitcher went to the ballpark.
"My suspicion is he still has a strong preference to stay in the National League," Axelrod said.
"I know nothing more than I knew yesterday afternoon. I don't know if there's a deal in place, if a deal's close, or whatever. There was a question posed to us as to whether Jake's position on going to the American League was still cast in stone or whether he'd consent to going to an AL team, specifically, the White Sox."
White Sox general manager Ken Williams declined comment.
A call and e-mail to Peavy weren't immediately returned. Padres GM Kevin Towers hadn't returned several calls and text messages seeking comment.
Padres chief executive officer Jeff Moorad said the team would not comment, citing last fall's situation where Towers spoke openly about the possibility of moving Peavy. The Padres spoke with the Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs, but talks eventually broke off.
"Neither general manager has contacted me to ask my opinion," commissioner Bud Selig said. "All I know is what I heard."
Several reports said the White Sox would send top pitching prospect Aaron Poreda and young left-hander Clayton Richard to San Diego as part of the package.
White Sox reliever Scott Linebrink, Peavy's friend and former Padres teammate, said he spoke with Peavy by telephone Wednesday and believed there was a "50-50 chance" the pitcher would agree to the trade.
"I answered all of his questions but when it comes down to it, it's his decision," Linebrink said. "I don't think anything I said is going to sway him one way or another. He's going to make the decision that's best for him and his career and his family."
The Padres, who lost 99 games last season and aren't expected to contend this year, have been cutting payroll. Peavy is to earn $11 million this season, $15 million in 2010, $16 million in 2011 and $17 million in 2012. The Padres have a $22 million option for 2013 with a $4 million buyout.
White Sox chairman Jerry Reinsdorf has expressed concern about spending big money in the current economic climate. Several older, high-paid players _ including Jim Thome, Jermaine Dye, Jose Contreras and Octavio Dotel _ can leave after this season, freeing up payroll for the most expensive part of Peavy's contract.
The White Sox are off to a slow start, but are expected to contend in the closely bunched AL Central. Having Peavy would help. The right-hander, who turns 28 on May 31, is 3-5 and has a 3.82 ERA with 69 strikeouts and 19 walks after spending time on the disabled list last year with a strained right elbow.
"Having him in the rotation would be great," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "He's one of the best in the game _ if not the best in the game, at least the National League. He's going to make our ballclub a lot better."
If he approves the deal, Peavy would go from pitcher-friendly Petco Park to U.S. Cellular Field, where the balls fly out during the summer. He, along with Mark Buehrle, would also anchor one of the league's best rotations.
"If this man comes here, there's one thing I'm going to tell him: I'm going to give him the best opportunity to win games and the less opportunity to lose," Guillen said. "He's going to have a chance to win more games because our bullpen is pretty good and he's going to give our ballclub a better chance. I've managed a lot of good pitchers in the past. I'm not going to treat him different from anybody else. When he's out there, make me look good. Don't make me go to the mound to get you out."
Depending on what Peavy decides, he may ask for certain considerations, Axelrod said.
When the ace was being dangled last winter, he and Axelrod made a list of things they might ask for if he were traded, the agent said. Peavy could ask for some of those things if a trade finally goes through.
"Jake's got an option year out there. Do you ask him to forget the option year? Would there be an upgrade of some sort? Jake has a home and family in San Diego, and a trade could incur a lot of hardship and expense. One thing we did say, in any case we were going to ask that the no-trade be made full for the term of the contract, regardless."
Axelrod pointed out that if Peavy plays out the contract in San Diego, he'll gain his 10-and-5 rights to block any trade, having spent 10 years in the big leagues and five with the same team.
Peavy is scheduled to start against the Cubs at home on Friday night.
AP Sports Writer Bernie Wilson in San Diego and Baseball Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.