Jonathan Papelbon told reporters that he’s comfortable without a long-term deal even though he wants to be in Boston long after the Red Sox lose control of him following the 2011 season. As Alex Speier of WEEI.com notes, Papelbon can see himself closing games at Fenway for a while.
“Of course I would love to be with Boston for a long time,” Papelbon said. “But this is the way it is right now. I’m happy going one year at a time. I would love to stay here for 15 years.”
By then, Papelbon will be 44 years old, but he can envision himself pitching into his forties. And when it comes to closers succeeding late into their careers, Papelbon doesn’t have to look any further than 40-year-old division rival Mariano Rivera.
“Mo, he just makes it look easy. He makes it look easy,” Pabelbon said. “Hopefully I will be able to, but only time will tell.”
Papelbon is under contract for $9.35MM this year. He says he didn’t ask the Red Sox about his place in their long-term plans this winter.