Red Sox: Five candidates that could be Boston’s next closer
The Red Sox need a set closer to contend in the second half
It’s been quite a while since the Red Sox actually had a set closer. Craig Kimbrel held the mantle for a few years until his departure in 2019. Matt Barnes had finally earned the position last season until he ran out of gas in the second half and hasn’t been the same since.
There were a few options Boston could’ve gone with out of spring training but as we inch closer to the All-Star break, nobody has claimed the title. While the Sox are currently flirting with a Wild Card spot, just a half-game back of the Cleveland Guardians and Tampa Bay Rays as I write this, they could be in a far better spot.
Boston has 13 blown saves and it’s hard to not wonder what could’ve been had they held at least a few of those. Just converting three of those opportunities would shoot them to second place in the division and would put a much different feeling on the first half of this season.
Now don’t get me wrong, the Red Sox pitching staff outside of those gaffes has been incredible. The starting rotation has far exceeded anything we could’ve predicted and the bullpen does have a select few arms that I fully trust when called upon.
The issue for me, and it’s one I’ve pointed out in seasons past, is the lack of defined roles. The best teams in the league all know who will be pitching and when and it allows their staff to get into a routine that allows them to perform their best.
With that all said, these are the five arms I think the Red Sox should look at to be their closer for the second half of the season.