Stark on Papelbon: “I think He’ll be Around on August 1st”
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports had reported Friday that the Nationals could have interest in Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon if the Phillies were willing to eat a large portion of his remaining salary.
While we all know that Papelbon wants out of Philly, he does want to remain closing games - something he wouldn't do in Washington. Papelbon has indicated that he won't approve any trade unless he will be the closer on the team he's dealt to - and most likely wouldn't supplant Nationals closer Drew Storen in the ninth inning there, making a match unlikely.
ESPN.com Senior baseball writer Jayson Stark joined me on the Sports Bash Friday and said the chances Papelbon gets moved don't look good right now.
(Listen to ESPN.com Sr. Baseball writer Jayson Stark)
"They missed their window," Stark said. "I really believe this. There was a time where I think the Blue Jays were ready to do it . There was a time where I think the Cubs were close to doing it. There was a time where I think the Dodgers were interested in doing it. Those teams from what I can gather have all moved on now and I don't know where Jonathan Papelbon is going."
Papelbon's contract could be an issue, he's owed $13 million this season and has a vesting option for $13 million in 2016, if they expect to move the closer. However the more the Phillies have waited, the more options entered the market.
"Right now there are about seven closers out there and almost no contenders looking," Stark said. "So I think he's still around on August 1st, wouldn't that be fun."