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David Brown

The Oscar goes to Jake Peavy for looking like 'Hurt Locker' star

David Brown
Big League Stew

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GLENDALE, Ariz. — Jake Peavy(notes) stirred his morning tea and cracked a smile.

Others before had told him about the resemblance. The ace of the White Sox rotation is a dead ringer for Jeremy Renner, who's up for Best Actor at the Academy Awards on Sunday night thanks to his breakthrough performance in "The Hurt Locker."

"It's amazing you say that and are interviewing me about it," Peavy said. "Because people — I guess who had just seen the movie — texted me right after and said, 'I saw a guy and he reminds me a lot of you.'"

A "history buff" and outdoorsman in the Teddy Roosevelt style, Peavy hasn't yet seen the movie, even though the subject matter seems up his alley. "The Hurt Locker" is a fictionalized but riveting account of the army's top bomb detonator in Iraq.

Peavy got a good look at Renner thanks to a picture I had on my phone.

"How 'bout that?" Peavy said. "I guess there are some similarities."

Peavy and his texting friends aren't the only ones who think so.

Ladies and gentlemen, it's time for "Joe Torre & Jake Peavy at the Movies."

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"He's very similar, yeah," said Torre, the Dodgers manager and resident film critic. "And looked like he had the same [kind of] guts, too. ... Not that [Peavy] is pulling out wires and stuff."

Maybe, maybe not. Let's see which signals A.J. Pierzynski(notes) puts down.

Torre calls "The Hurt Locker" his movie of the year, better than "Avatar," "Up in the Air" or "Inglourious Basterds."

Along with "Avatar," it's the front-runner for Best Picture. Its director, Kathryn Bigelow, is favored to win a statue as well.

"That's my movie," Torre said. "I'm jumping on it."

Also jumping on the Peavy-is-Renner bandwagon, teammate Paul Konerko(notes).

"Wow," Konerko said when shown Renner's image. "He DOES look like him. I already planned on seeing it, but now I'm going to be thinking about the resemblance."

John Danks(notes) and Gordon Beckham(notes) agreed, with Danks adding, "It's a war movie with bomb squads? Sure seems like the kind of thing I'd watch."

Peavy has a running excuse for not having seen "Hurt Locker."

"Having kids, we're either watching cartoons or trying to watch SportsCenter in the little time I do get to watch TV," said Peavy, who's also usually in the audience for a Will Ferrell or Vince Vaughn flick.

But he'd eventually like to see "Hurt Locker" to critique his doppleganger.

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"I'll go check it out now, I guess, now that there's somebody in it who resembles me," Peavy said. "Or I resemble him."

If not "The Hurt Locker," what is the most recent movie that Peavy saw?

"I did see 'Couples Retreat' not too long ago," Peavy said. "I thought it was OK. It's not one of Vince's classics."

It's no "Swingers."

"I think that one's hard to beat," Peavy said.

What about the Oscars? Is Peavy going to watch Renner possibly pick up some hardware?

Meh.

"I won't plan my day around it," Peavy said. "But if I'm sitting at home ... I think the Oscars, the Grammys interest most of America."

Torre, too, expects to miss the Oscars because of a dinner date. He actually attended the ceremonies once. Didn't walk the red carpet. Wasn't a seat filler. Somewhere between.

"It was the year 'Rain Man' won [for Best Picture]," Torre said.

T.J. Simers of the L.A. Times said he was surprised Torre hasn't been in more movies.

"I've turned down a lot of them," Torre said, laughing. "I just haven't been comfortable with the scripts. ... Is that what they say?"

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