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Phillies reportedly agree to deal with Jonathan Papelbon

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The Philadelphia Phillies, who reportedly were on the verge of re-signing closer Ryan Madson to a 4 year, $44 million deal a few days ago, have now reportedly agreed on a contract with former Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon.


Jonathan Papelbon

#58 / Boston Red Sox

6-4

225

Nov 23, 1980


 

The deal is supposedly 4 years for almost $50 million, with a fifth year vesting option that could make the entire package worth $60 million.

Papelbon is about to turn 31, was moved to the bullpen in the first place because of concerns about how his arm would hold up to the stresses of starting, and was considered a possible non-tender candidate prior to last season because his 2009 and 2010 seasons weren't that good (for a ten-figure closer), with a FIP of 3.05 and 3.51, respectively.

Papelbon got his walk rate under control last year, and had a solid season:

Year Age Tm Lg W L W-L% ERA G GS GF CG SHO SV IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP BF ERA+ WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB Awards
2003 22 BOS-min A- 1 2 .333 6.34 13 6 1 0 0 0 32.2 43 23 23 2 9 0 36 4 0 3 152 1.592 11.8 0.6 2.5 9.9 4.00 LOW · NYPL
2004 23 BOS-min A+ 12 7 .632 2.64 24 24 0 2 0 0 129.2 97 43 38 6 43 2 153 7 0 3 520 1.080 6.7 0.4 3.0 10.6 3.56 SAR · FLOR
2005 24 BOS-min AA,AAA 6 4 .600 2.59 21 18 3 0 0 1 114.2 80 37 33 11 26 3 110 6 1 2 448 0.924 6.3 0.9 2.0 8.6 4.23 PRT,PAW · EL,IL
2005 24 BOS AL 3 1 .750 2.65 17 3 4 0 0 0 34.0 33 11 10 4 17 2 34 3 0 1 148 173 1.471 8.7 1.1 4.5 9.0 2.00
2006 25 BOS AL 4 2 .667 0.92 59 0 49 0 0 35 68.1 40 8 7 3 13 2 75 1 0 2 257 517 0.776 5.3 0.4 1.7 9.9 5.77 AS,RoY-2
2007 26 BOS AL 1 3 .250 1.85 59 0 53 0 0 37 58.1 30 12 12 5 15 0 84 4 0 0 224 257 0.771 4.6 0.8 2.3 13.0 5.60 AS
2008 27 BOS AL 5 4 .556 2.34 67 0 62 0 0 41 69.1 58 24 18 4 8 0 77 0 0 2 273 199 0.952 7.5 0.5 1.0 10.0 9.63 AS
2009 28 BOS AL 1 1 .500 1.85 66 0 59 0 0 38 68.0 54 15 14 5 24 1 76 4 0 0 285 254 1.147 7.1 0.7 3.2 10.1 3.17 AS
2010 29 BOS AL 5 7 .417 3.90 65 0 53 0 0 37 67.0 57 34 29 7 28 4 76 2 0 4 287 112 1.269 7.7 0.9 3.8 10.2 2.71
2011 30 BOS AL 4 1 .800 2.94 63 0 54 0 0 31 64.1 50 22 21 3 10 1 87 3 0 1 255 145 0.933 7.0 0.4 1.4 12.2 8.70
7 Seasons 23 19 .548 2.33 396 3 334 0 0 219 429.1 322 126 111 31 115 10 509 17 0 10 1729 197 1.018 6.8 0.6 2.4 10.7 4.43
162 Game Avg. 4 3 .548 2.33 67 1 57 0 0 37 73 55 21 19 5 20 2 87 3 0 2 295 197 1.018 6.8 0.6 2.4 10.7 4.43
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 11/11/2011.

 

Still...this deal doesn't make much sense to me.  You've got a guy who has been volatile, who is entering his early 30s, and who has some health questions surrounding him.  Assuming the new CBA doesn't have major changes to free agent compensation (a big assumption, but that's what we have to work with right now), he'll cost the Phillies a first round pick.

Seems like there are a lot better ways to spend $50 or $60 million dollars.