Tuesday, August 25, 2009

First to Third: Papelbon Out?

On ESPN's Sunday night baseball broadcast, the genius that is Steve Phillips suggested that Daniel Bard is the Red Sox closer of the future and that the off-season may be Theo Epstein's best opportunity to trade Jonathan Papelbon.

While Papelbon hasn't necessarily struggled this year, he hasn't been nearly as dominant as in past years. His strikeouts are much lower this year and his he's already set a new career-high in walks. With a month left in the season, Papelbon has matched his career-high in home runs allowed and he's getting hit more than he ever has. In addition to his on-field "woes," Papelbon continues to struggle with tact. When asked about the possibility of the Red Sox acquiring Billy Wagner, Papelbon outright questioned the move, comparing it to the Eric Gagne trade of 2007. This spawned a war of words between Boston's closer and the former Met closer, as reported by SI's Jon Heyman. It's not hard to fathom few Boston players missing those type of remarks if Papelbon is dealt.

If the Sox do try to trade Papelbon, expect a hefty haul for Boston as young, effective closers are rarely available and highly valuable.

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thomas jones said...

This will be a great addition to the Red Sox roster..!!

Newcelebrityblog said...

i wonder what the red sox record is against the o's over the last five years or so it cant be very good cuz they never seem to beat them.

Marc Edelman said...

The Red Sox are one of few MLB teams that are both financially savvy and perennial competitive. Theo Epstein never liked the idea of a traditional, high price closer. However, the team seemed to have stumbled on a very good one by accident in Papelbon.

I would not be surprised to see Papelbon moved to an NL team with late inning problems for some affordable, high OBP, high SLG players.

Papelbon to the Cubs for Jake Fox, Carlos Marmol and Andrew Cashner?

I'd do that. My guess is Theo would too.