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Red Sox starter Jake Peavy says he’s ready for biggest game of his life against team that almost traded for him

10.25.13 at 6:29 pm ET
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Right-hander Jake Peavy will start for the Red Sox in Game 3 of the World Series. (AP)

Right-hander Jake Peavy will start for the Red Sox in Game 3 of the World Series. (AP)

ST. LOUIS — Red Sox starter Jake Peavy expressed his enthusiasm for the responsibility that awaits him in Game 3 of the World Series, when he will take the mound on the biggest stage of his life. The right-hander suggested that his seven-run, three-inning mess of an outing in a Game 4 loss to the Tigers in the ALCS would be an isolated incident, with subtle mechanical tweaks capable of allowing him to harness what he characterized as excellent stuff that night into positive results.

“Everything is fixed, fixable. It wasn’t too much to read into it, really,” said Peavy. “Just a small, small adjustment … can make all the difference in the world. And there’s absolutely no excuses tomorrow night. This is what I’ve lived for my whole life is to — my whole baseball career, I should say, to have this opportunity to go out there on the biggest stage and have a chance to help your team win a World Series game and a World Series title. I’m as prepared as I’ll ever be, physically, mentally, and we’ll go out there tomorrow night and see if we can execute pitch by pitch, and find a way to win.”

Peavy, who engages himself in animated dialogue on the mound, is a self-acknowledged fiery sort. That said, he insisted that the setting would not prevent him from managing his intensity.

“There’s not going to be a situation that I get overwhelmed in and get too emotional and let the emotions of the moment beat me up,” said Peavy. “I just feel like I’ve been in enough situations over the years that there’s nothing tomorrow night that’s going to rattle me or get in my head, or it doesn’t matter how loud the crowd is. It doesn’t matter how bad things are going, it comes down to trying to execute pitches and be able to make tiny adjustments that make the biggest ‑‑ it takes getting some balls hit at people, and some guys making some plays and just getting in the rhythm of the game. Like I said, I think we all expect that to happen tomorrow night.”

That the right-hander will be on the mound in the World Series for the Red Sox against the Cardinals represents a somewhat fascinating development. After all, the Cardinals also pursued him in a trade with the White Sox this summer, but it was ultimately Boston that proved able to swing the deal to land the right-hander.

Peavy suggested that it would have been an honor to pitch for St. Louis, but that he is confident he ended up in the right place.

“I did know that St. Louis was in on it and were having some talks [with the White Sox]. I was kept abreast of a lot of the talk through [White Sox GM] Rick Hahn there in Chicago letting me know. And I know it was a pretty serious conversation I guess they were having in St. Louis. I was obviously excited about the opportunity to be moved simply because of the situation I was in in Chicago,” said Peavy, referencing the fact that the White Sox were sinking to the AL Central cellar. “Really all the teams that I felt I would be moved to were teams I was happy to go to because of the position their team was in. St. Louis is a city, a team, an organization that I’ve always respected. I love the National League style of game. Nothing excites me any more than getting to be a part tomorrow night and trying to get a bunt down, maybe hitting and running, and feeling like a true baseball player, as opposed to how we are as a pitcher in the American League. I would have been excited to come to St. Louis. It’s a place I dearly love and enjoyed playing in any time through here.

“But that being said,” he added, “everything has a way of working itself out the way it should. I found a home in Boston, that I couldn’t be anymore thankful to be.”

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