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Papelbon's Future - Starter Or Closer?

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Papelbon's Future - Starter Or Closer?

Postby Blakas » Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:37 pm

I know earlier this year, Paps was considered a one year closer.

But when I read the BoSox are considering switching Hansen to become a starter, I gotta wonder whether Papelbon's great start as a closer has the team thinking this is his future role.

Reason I would like some clarity is that I am in a keeper league, am very strong in future relievers, and am considering trading him to make a push for first. But, if he is going into the rotation next year, I definitely need to hold on to him.

Anybody with good insight here?
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Postby Omaha Red Sox » Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:50 pm

I believe they will most likely stick with the original plan and have Hansen close, while Papelbon starts. Who knows, though, with the stuff Paps gives to that pen, he could be valuable for years to come as the closer.
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Postby cordscords » Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:59 pm

I think it depends on what happens at the end of this year.

Does Papelbon hit a wall, or does he continue to pitch like a freak of nature? If he continues doing well, there is no way you can remove him. Don't tinker with success.
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Postby Geek » Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:08 pm

He's the best at his position in all of Major League Baseball.

It would be pure stupidity to mess with that.

Then again, these are the people who traded Arroyo for Wily Mo Strikeouts.
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Postby superfly » Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:37 pm

I think Papelbon will be a starter in the future.
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Postby hybrid » Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:48 pm

He will be moved back to a starter, the Red Sox should need one next year. They drafted Hansen for a reason, they think he will be a dominant closer in the future ... not a set up guy. Papelbon is better suited for starting then Hansen, though I don't think he will be that much more then a middle of the rotation type pitcher.
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Postby cordscords » Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:55 pm

Can anybody see the Sox trading Hansen at the deadline for a Zito/Willis?
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Postby hybrid » Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:58 pm

cordscords wrote:Can anybody see the Sox trading Hansen at the deadline for a Zito/Willis?


That is an interesting idea, but they would have to put more together to get either of those guys. If they could put a package together it might be something to really consider for them.
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Postby Secret Avatar » Sun Jun 11, 2006 8:06 pm

As somone said above, I don't think anyone knows whether Paps will be a starter or closer in 2007. There's still a lot of baseball left in 2006 and while Paps has been virtually perfect in the 9th, there's no guarantee that will continue. Obviously, if he does falter down the stretch, all bets are off.

My best guesstimate is, though, that if he continues to be lights-out in the 9th, he'll likely be the closer in 2007 and beyond. Paps has said publicly he likes being a closer. Boston is currently trying to "convert" Hansen into a starter.

(Even if this effort fails, Boston might not want to mess with success by moving Paps from the closer role. It's not easy to find a closer who has been as lights-out as Paps, and as good as Hansen is supposed to be, the odds are against him finding immediate success as a closer in the majors. The majority of closers have to toil for a few years in setup.)

What this says to me is that all the pieces are falling into place for Paps to be the closer for the foreseeable future.
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