Ever since Jonathan Papelbon took the midnight train to Philly at the end of the 2011 season, the Red Sox closer role has been in a constant state of flux. Fans who had tired of his schtick soon realized that they had grown much more annoyed with the mismanagement and send in the clowns parade that left a gaping hole in his wake.
Andrew Bailey was secured in the offseason from Oakland and Daniel Bard was moved into the starting rotation. We all know how that turned out. Today Bard continues to look under every rock for control and consistency while Bailey seemingly trips over every rock. He injured his thumb in the spring of 2012, was out most of the season and predictably wasn’t right even when he came back to replace Sox head case poster boy Alfredo Aceves. This year he moved in and out of the closer role with Joel Hanrahan until Hanrahan flamed out spectacularly only five weeks into the regular season.
Meanwhile, Papelbon is motoring right along this year; 17 appearances, 8 saves in 8 save opportunities and a 1.02 ERA. Yeah, the old girlfriend looks so much better when you see her dating another guy. Which brings us to today’s Red Sox Roundtable discussion: Should the Red Sox trade for Jonathan Papelbon and, if so, what trade would you put together?
Personally, I’m ready to bring back the Pap. He’ll be 33 in July, hasn’t lost much velocity and appears to be learning to be as deceptive now as he once wasoverpowering. Here’s the catch; the reason he left in the first place was because Boston wouldn’t offer him a multi-year deal. This time around the Sox will have to be bold and offer him a two to three-year package.
Now it’s your turn. What kind of deal would Boston have to offer to make it good enough for Philly to let him go? Or, should the deal be made at all? Our BSI staff – Adian, Conor, Earl, Harry, John and Paul (got two get two more writers named George and Ringo) – will be weighing in. Let ‘s get this party started. Jump in all!