Red Sox, Papelbon Agree To One-Year Deal

2:25pm: ESPN Boston's Gordon Edes reports that the two sides did in fact come to an agreement today, and Papelbon will earn $9.35MM on a one year deal in 2010. Incentives could put another $150K in the closer's pocket.

1:19pm: WEEI.com's Rob Bradford hears that the Red Sox and closer Jonathan Papelbon may have a one year deal worth $9MM in place. The team may announce that arbitration figures were exchanged, though Bradford expects the deal to get done.

The deal would make Papelbon the ninth highest paid relief pitcher in baseball, just ahead of Brian Fuentes. He earned $6.25MM in 2009, the record for a first year arbitration eligible pitcher. Since breaking into the big leagues in 2005, Papelbon's 1.84 ERA is the second best in the game (behind Joe Nathan) among pitchers with at least as many innings pitched. 


51 Responses to Red Sox, Papelbon Agree To One-Year Deal Leave a Reply

  1. That’s kind of a lot considering Bard is basically ready to take over for 400k/year

    • Bard is NOT ready to take over as the full-time closer. He still has a lot to learn and needs to be more consistent.

      • Guest 5 years ago

        Agreed, hes just a couple years removed from Craig Hansenitis. No way should he be the closer this year.

  2. YuppieScum 5 years ago

    That’s conjecture hullo.

  3. peterherman 5 years ago

    Bard is a promising young pitcher, but not a lock to handle the 9th. Papelbon has repeatedly stated that he has no interest in signing away any arbitration or free agent years at this point. The Sox aren’t going to get him on a team-friendly long-term deal, and $9MM would be better than $12MM.

  4. robdes 5 years ago

    This is a good move either way, get some security at the closer position and if Bard flourishes then you may have a good trade chip at the deadline to possibly acquire a bat to make a deep playoff run.

  5. $1529282 5 years ago

    I hope Papelbon keeps going year-to-year and then ends up having to take a contract that’s about 20% of what his egotistical mind is dreaming of every night.

    • 2 mil for his closing abilities, 7.35 mil for his huge ego.

    • andrewyf 5 years ago

      He’s already making more money than if he had signed a long-term deal. Papelbon is absolutely handling this the right way if his goal is the most money possible.

      • $1529282 5 years ago

        Unless he gets injured or has a garbage year and gets non-tendered to save money. He did walk more batters in 2009 than he did in 2007-2008 combined. He also posted his lowest WAR of his career.

        He’s become more hittable the past two seasons, and his control is slipping. He was still overall a dominant reliever, but he’s shown signs of regression at least.

        I don’t think anything would make me happier to see Papelbon get rocked to the tune of a 5.00+ ERA. Here’s hoping he’s the 2010 Brad Lidge.

        • Most relievers stats are very skewed due to the lack of innings pitched. Papelbon got roughed up a few times last season, but if you look at the important statistics, he blew about his average saves (3) and a 1.85 ERA racking up 38 saves… thats about all I need to say.
          Was he more hittable? yes.
          Are most pitchers more hittable as they age in the majors? yes.
          Do the greats like Papelbon adjust? Yes.

          Some notes on last year…
          1) nearly every homer he gave up was on a slider he missed on. The slider is a new pitch and while its pretty solid, his control on it is lacking
          2) he did not throw the splitter in 2009. He chose to stick with the slider. In my eyes, a mistake.
          3) He’s pitched in over 20 games where he did not even have a save opportunity. He has thrown 140 innings roughly over the past 2 seasons. I don’t know if there are any other closers in baseball who have done that. The more you throw, the more you tire, the more you leave the ball up.

          They will be much more conservative with him this year.

      • $1529282 5 years ago

        Unless he gets injured or has a garbage year and gets non-tendered to save money. He did walk more batters in 2009 than he did in 2007-2008 combined. He also posted his lowest WAR of his career.

        He’s become more hittable the past two seasons, and his control is slipping. He was still overall a dominant reliever, but he’s shown signs of regression at least.

        I don’t think anything would make me happier to see Papelbon get rocked to the tune of a 5.00+ ERA. Here’s hoping he’s the 2010 Brad Lidge.

  6. bosox217 5 years ago

    Alright for starters i want to say I’m a big Red Sox fan who is sick and tired of hearing people talking about how Papelbon has such great trade value. He doesn’t at all. A closer on a one year deal making 9mil (may still be under team control for another year? Either way his salary will most likely only rise through arb). He has also stated he wants to test the free agent market and get the biggest paycheck he can. If he does get traded i highly doubt anyone would give up a big bat for a closer. It seems as if most teams in the majors are transitioning to cheaper options in the bullpen.
    Second, Daniel Bard has pitched a total of ONE SEASON at the major league level. There is NO CHANCE that he is ready as of yet to take over the closers role. He may at some point down the road but only time will tell. Bard may be fun to watch with that 100mph fastball but IMO he still needs to fine tune his off speed pitches. Right now with Okajima, Bard, and Papelbon the Red Sox have a very formidable back end of the rotation….that is if Papelbon learns that he can actually get people out without using a fastball every pitch. Ride it out this year and who know’s what will happen going into 2011.

  7. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Looks like Epstein’s no arbitration hearings streak stays alive.

    • BoSoxSam 5 years ago

      Well, technically I think Hermida is still out there? But yeah. Papelbon was the only one I thought might go to hearing. 😛

  8. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Looks like Epstein’s no arbitration hearings streak stays alive.

  9. bosox21 5 years ago

    Alright for starters i want to say I’m a big Red Sox fan who is sick and tired of hearing people talking about how Papelbon has such great trade value. He doesn’t at all. A closer on a one year deal making 9mil (may still be under team control for another year? Either way his salary will most likely only rise through arb). He has also stated he wants to test the free agent market and get the biggest paycheck he can. If he does get traded i highly doubt anyone would give up a big bat for a closer. It seems as if most teams in the majors are transitioning to cheaper options in the bullpen.
    Second, Daniel Bard has pitched a total of ONE SEASON at the major league level. There is NO CHANCE that he is ready as of yet to take over the closers role. He may at some point down the road but only time will tell. Bard may be fun to watch with that 100mph fastball but IMO he still needs to fine tune his off speed pitches. Right now with Okajima, Bard, and Papelbon the Red Sox have a very formidable back end of the rotation….that is if Papelbon learns that he can actually get people out without using a fastball every pitch. Ride it out this year and who know’s what will happen going into 2011.

  10. bosox21 5 years ago

    Alright for starters i want to say I’m a big Red Sox fan who is sick and tired of hearing people talking about how Papelbon has such great trade value. He doesn’t at all. A closer on a one year deal making 9mil (may still be under team control for another year? Either way his salary will most likely only rise through arb). He has also stated he wants to test the free agent market and get the biggest paycheck he can. If he does get traded i highly doubt anyone would give up a big bat for a closer. It seems as if most teams in the majors are transitioning to cheaper options in the bullpen.
    Second, Daniel Bard has pitched a total of ONE SEASON at the major league level. There is NO CHANCE that he is ready as of yet to take over the closers role. He may at some point down the road but only time will tell. Bard may be fun to watch with that 100mph fastball but IMO he still needs to fine tune his off speed pitches. Right now with Okajima, Bard, and Papelbon the Red Sox have a very formidable back end of the rotation….that is if Papelbon learns that he can actually get people out without using a fastball every pitch. Ride it out this year and who know’s what will happen going into 2011.

  11. bosox21 5 years ago

    wierd it went in twice with two different names….my bad lol

  12. bosox21 5 years ago

    wierd it went in twice with two different names….my bad lol

  13. RedSox2219 5 years ago

    Oh how I can’t wait to see his egotistical self off the team sometime soon.

    • Why? The dude was made for Boston. I hope he becomes a lifetime Red Sox when he finds out the money won’t be out there for closers. Papelbon has the chance to go down as one of the greatest closers to ever play the game, whether you like him or not. Was I pissed at him for blowing the game this year? Sure, but the way we were playin, we weren’t gonna come back anyway. Not only that, but I know because he relies so heavily on his ego, he’s been working his butt off this offseason to get himself back to the top. We may well see Papelbon’s best season, this season. There are a lot of reasons for him to come out firing.

      • RedSox2219 5 years ago

        hopefully he does come out to prove everyone wrong but I didn’t like that he was all about the money. That was the one thing that irked me when he said that publicly.

        • Believe me, Papelbon knows he was made for Boston. He’s Irish, abnoxious, and I bet you he likes to drink A LOT lol. I love him and I hope he hangs in Beantown for a long time. If there’s anyone that cuts ties, its the Sox, not Papelbon. Bard is something special in the making and Pap knows it will come down to a business decision on both parts. If the Sox can have Bard for 400k why pay someone else to close for 12-15 million. Keep in mind, Paps on pace for the record books. He’s been successful in Boston, and I’d predict a series of 3 year deals for Papelbon down the line. I don’t see anyone giving him 12-15 a season besides the Angels if they got desperate. I’d say a series of 3/33-35MM over the rest of his career keeps him in Boston. Not sure if Theo wants to do that tho

          Also, after all the criticism of teams

        • Sorry. After the criticism of teams overspending on closers, I’m not sure what’s going to happen, but I can promise you if Pap looks for 3/45-4/60 he aint gonna find it. Mets are set. Yanks have bigger problems after this year, such as jeter and mariano’s contracts and replacing Gardner in LF. Among other issues. They won’t waste 15MM on a closer who’s hated in NY. The angels may have to go all in, but fuentes could still work out fine for them. Who else would overpay for a closer? Seattle has Aardsma, so they won’t either.

          Its Boston for Pap, and I think he will realize it quickly. He’s a pretty smart fellow

  14. RedSox2219 5 years ago

    Oh how I can’t wait to see his egotistical self off the team sometime soon.

  15. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Apparently the Sox also came to terms with Ramirez and Delcarmen. I think that’s all but Hermida for the Sox.

  16. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Apparently the Sox also came to terms with Ramirez and Delcarmen. I think that’s all but Hermida for the Sox.

  17. BoSoxSam 5 years ago

    Well, all I have to say is: if Papelbon deserves 9m, Verlander DEFINITELY deserves that.

  18. Death_To_Flying_Things 5 years ago

    Wow, only the Red Sox and Yankees can afford to play a closer this much. I know Bard may not totally be ready, but at what point do you cut the slight loss in production to save like 8.6 million? Or even make a trade for some random undervalued reliever and make him a closer, this is just a joke.

    • The Rays ,of all teams, spent 7.25 on closer Rafael Soriano this year..thats only a couple mil off from Paps contract…now that surprised me…

  19. andrewyf 5 years ago

    Not much. For the reasons you state (he will leave via free agency unless you floor him with a deal that will be horrible for your franchise), and the fact that he’s already making more money than most closers, who really wants him?

    He’s much more valuable to the Red Sox than he is to anyone else.

  20. Latrappe 5 years ago

    Yep… If Bard turn the way he’s suppose to, Papel-Mouth is a goner.

  21. Latrappe 5 years ago

    Yep… If Bard turn the way he’s suppose to, Papel-Mouth is a goner.

  22. If your talking about unloading Paps this year at the deadline then it would only be to contending NL teams as I dont think the sox want to face him…Unless of course it was a deal too good to say no to..Financially bard is more valuable(under control for 5-6 more years) and if his development keeps improving at this pace, you could get quite a haul back for him as the centerpiece of a deal..Me personally, I see Paps hitting the FA market and the sox getting a 1st round pick for him…that is if hes a type A FA..Bard looks like the future closer..

  23. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    It’s not his ability, it’s his obnoxiousness and his high expectations for pay. He also regressed in just about every pitching category last season, something most people attribute to a change in his pitching motion he made to reduce wear on his arm. The change resulted in his walk rate more than tripling from the previous year and that’s the last thing you want in a closer who relies so heavily on his fastball. His “slurve” also pretty much disappeared last season.

    As it stands, Papelbon’s still one of the best closers out there, but he’s essentially lost elite status until he can get back his slurve and regain that pinpoint control that was the reason he was nigh unhittable previously.

  24. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    It’s not his ability, it’s his obnoxiousness and his high expectations for pay. He also regressed in just about every pitching category last season, something most people attribute to a change in his pitching motion he made to reduce wear on his arm. The change resulted in his walk rate more than tripling from the previous year and that’s the last thing you want in a closer who relies so heavily on his fastball. His “slurve” also pretty much disappeared last season.

    As it stands, Papelbon’s still one of the best closers out there, but he’s essentially lost elite status until he can get back his slurve and regain that pinpoint control that was the reason he was nigh unhittable previously.

  25. Financially, Bard is WAAAAAY more valuable to teams..hes under control for the next 5-6 years where paps will be making over 10mil per come next year….We just dont know for sure if hes going to be that shut down closer ..By the time the end of next year when Paps is to be a FA, we’ll all know if Bard has what it takes..I think he does but if the sox decide to keep Paps long term,I think you could get a solid haul back with Bard as the centerpiece of a deal…no question…

  26. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Not necessarily. Rivera’s contract is up after this season and they don’t have a real heir apparent to the closer role. Keep a close eye on Rivera next offseason. If the Yanks sign him to a one year deal, expect to see them throw a boatload of money Papelbon’s way.

  27. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Not necessarily. Rivera’s contract is up after this season and they don’t have a real heir apparent to the closer role. Keep a close eye on Rivera next offseason. If the Yanks sign him to a one year deal, expect to see them throw a boatload of money Papelbon’s way.

  28. peterherman 5 years ago

    As much as the Yankee fan-base would love to “stick it” to the Red Sox fan-base by signing Papelbon as a free agent, the Yankees have Joba Chamberlain already. Smart money’s on this year being his last chance to stick as a starter. If he stays in the ‘pen, there’s no way the Yankees bother with Papelbon.

  29. peterherman 5 years ago

    As much as the Yankee fan-base would love to “stick it” to the Red Sox fan-base by signing Papelbon as a free agent, the Yankees have Joba Chamberlain already. Smart money’s on this year being his last chance to stick as a starter. If he stays in the ‘pen, there’s no way the Yankees bother with Papelbon.

  30. again no. not a chance. They would either try to work out hughes as a closer (for some reason peterherman, they refuse to put Joba back in the pen where he belongs) or bring up Arodys Vizcaino (dunno why I originally put brackman here…) possibly after next season.Mariano won’t take a 1 year deal. He will demand, and get, 2… say $18-22 million? Not a bad contract if they can keep the dollars that low. Jeter will also demand, and get his 4 year 100 million contract. The Yanks will hardly be looking to throw money at Papelbon without addressing the vacancies in the outfield during and after this season. Not to mention Granderson’s contract goes up to like 10 mil next season I believe.Yanks will be looking at Carl Crawford next season I would guess and would put Gardner back where he belongs as a solid hitter and great pinch runner.

  31. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    The Yanks have made it pretty clear they plan to use Chamberlain as a starter.

  32. If the yankees dont make Joba the future closer they really need to rethink things..the kid is a beast for 1 inning..put him out there for 7 and hes not as good..his makeup screams closer anyway..I dont see how anyone cant see that…

  33. I disagree with you 0bsessions. I think his abnoxiousness and crazyness is everything the Sox love. They thrive with idiots on the team and I love it. The whole Cowboy Up! thing in 2004, The whole banging on the bullpen. They love that stuff! As do I! Do I think Paps a prick? Yes. Do I love him for it. Yes.

    Papelbon threw a slider secondly this season. He stopped throwing the splitter. He kept the slurve. Due to his inefficiency with the slider, it through off the effectiveness of the slurve. All the writers have said that they expect him to bring the split back this year. He was developing his 4th pitch. Can’t blame a guy for that.

    Lastly. How do you think a 1.84 era and 38/41 saves is not elite status? There are two other closers in recent history who are that dominant. Names are Mariano Rivera and Joe Nathan. I wouldn’t even put K-Rod here though I highly respect him for his big season with the Angels.

  34. And the reason they wont resign him long term, now that i’m back on point is not because he’s a prick or his contract demands. The Sox won’t spend 10+ mil on a closer. There is no reason for anyone to. The Yankees do, cause they can, but even Mariano ain’t worth 10 mil a season. Closers pitch 1 inning, and while its a very important one, there are still many who can get the job done, while not making it look as pretty. The WAR on most closers is pretty low.

  35. ArmchairGM 5 years ago

    Arodys Vizcaino was traded to the Braves in the Javier Vazquez deal.

  36. I’m aware. Have you not followed the thread? Hehe :)

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