Jonathan Papelbon: I could see myself returning to Red Sox
Jonathan Papelbon may be overpaid, but so are most closers. He has pitched well since signing a four-year, $50 million deal with the Philadelphia Phillies after the 2011 season and has converted all nine of his save opportunities this year.
Papelbon has eight teams on his no-trade list as a part of the deal he signed with the Phillies. According to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford, one of those teams is the Boston Red Sox. That doesn’t mean Papelbon can never see himself returning to the place where he began his career.
“Yeah, I could see myself in Boston,” he told WEEI.com on Monday. “I could see myself pitching in New York. You know me. I’ve always been the kind of guy who … I don’t really just settle, or accept things. Whatever happens in my future is going to happen. I’m not blind to that fact.”
The right-hander also mentioned that he is perfectly happy in Philadelphia, so the point is simply that he wants to keep pitching for a competitive team in a big market. It should also be noted that his comments came in advance of the Phillies’ game in Boston on Monday, where Pap said he was hoping to get a warm welcome.
“Hopefully I’ll be received well, but I will also accept the fact that I might not,” he said. “But hopefully the fans understand that what I did here was come here and help win. That’s the only thing I really wanted to do here and hopefully they’ll understand when I was here that’s all I really wanted to do was help the ballclub win. And we won, and hopefully they’ll recognize that. If they don’t, I understand and I get it and I’ll welcome them with open arms.”
Red Sox fans understand Papelbon helped them win, but they also may remember the comment he made about Phillies fans being smarter. Pap kind of wore out his welcome toward the end of his career in Boston. The chances of him returning are slim to none at this point.