Friday November 11, 2011 | 06:05 PM

Jonathan Papelbon has reportedly signed with the Philadelphia Phillies for four years and $50.

This is not a huge surprise since Papelbon has talked often about cashing in on free agency.

Papelbon is at his best when he is motivated, which means he will likely be lights out in 2012 and he proves he is worth the money. After that? We'll see.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox need a closer. It was always assumed that Daniel Bard and his 100 m.p.h. fastball would inherit the job. But Bard was one of the problems in the September collapse. His ERA over the last 28 days was 10.45.

Maybe Bobby Jenks comes back in shape.

More likely, the Red Sox will go shopping for a cheaper alternative than Papelbon. Boston could go after the Phillies' Ryan Madson.

Health Bell and Joe Nathan are also on the market.


About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

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