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Peavy rips Padres over firing GM

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Jon Paul Morosi

Jon Paul Morosi is a National MLB Writer for FOXSports.com. He previously covered baseball for the Detroit Free Press and Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He began his journalism career at the Bay City Times in his native Michigan. Follow him on Twitter.

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CHICAGO

The San Diego Padres have overachieved this season. They are 34-24, one game behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West.

Jake Peavy, the team’s former ace, believes the man who deserves credit for that success was fired at the end of last season: Kevin Towers.

Towers, who had been the team’s general manager since 1995, presided over the trade of Peavy to the Chicago White Sox last year. CEO Jeff Moorad cashiered Towers last October and replaced him with Jed Hoyer.

“Kevin Towers getting let go out there is an absolute joke,” Peavy told FOXSports.com on Wednesday. “You can quote me on that. Kevin Towers is a heck of a general manager.

“You see the product of his work. Moorad and those guys just took over the team last year. They didn’t change that team — (Jon) Garland’s pitched well for them, but they didn’t make any significant moves to that team, that coaching staff.

“Kevin Towers put that team together. That’s almost all his people there. And he didn’t have hardly anything to work with, either. That was not the right move, letting him go.”

Towers now works as an adviser for the New York Yankees. Peavy struggled with his mechanics early this year and is 4-5 with a 5.90 ERA during his first full season in Chicago.

Peavy said the Padres’ bullpen is “the best in the game.” The numbers support that. San Diego’s relievers have combined for a 2.70 ERA, the lowest in the majors.

Because setup men Luke Gregerson and Mike Adams have performed so well, Peavy said he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Hoyer dealt closer Heath Bell at the trade deadline in order to add prospects for the future.

“Those guys know their roles,” Peavy said of the relievers. “They’re ready to pitch. Darren Balsley and Darrel Akerfelds, the two coaches, instill so much confidence in those guys. They take the field, thinking they’re sometimes better than they are. That goes a long way, when you have people telling you how good you are.”

Peavy expects San Diego to be competitive all year, despite an offense that has produced one of the lowest home run totals in baseball.

“I don’t think it’s a fluke,” Peavy said. “They’re not going to hit. They understand that. They’re not hitting now. But they pitch great, and those guys battle. They fight. They play the game the right way. They don’t give guys extra outs.

“Are they going to win the West? Probably not. Some of the other teams have a little more talent. But I can’t see why they’re not going to compete all year. And I pull for them. I still have a lot of good friends over there. I wish them all well.”

Tagged: White Sox, Padres, Jake Peavy

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