Jun 21, 2015; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies relief pitcher Jonathan Papelbon (58) throws a pitch during the ninth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies defeated the Cardinals, 9-2. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
It is no secret to baseball fans that Papelbon has wanted out of Philadelphia for quite some time now. He has spoken to the media regarding the topic and has made it very clear that he wants to be part of a winning team. Papelbon has not let that distract him this season and is in fact having one of his better seasons with the Phillies as he seems to be trying to make himself more of a valuable asset.
Papelbon owns a 1.88 ERA with 13 saves in his 28.2 innings pitched. He has struck out just over 10 batters while allowing just about 2 walks per 9 innings. While the number of saves have not been high, he is pitching for a team that has won just 26 games this season so that is to be expected. He has not blown a save so far this year although he did pick up the loss in one of his 28 appearances.
In terms of his contract, the Rangers would need to pay the remaining $13 million for his contract this season and a 2016 vesting option that will be fully guaranteed that is likely to occur as long as he remains healthy the rest of the season. In the short term, Papelbon will be more expensive than Chapman, who is making just $8 million this year, but his market will likely not be as strong after the 2016 season which would make them more likely to be able to sign him.
The players that the team will need to use in a trade will likely remain the same as those with Chapman. The Phillies have held on to Papelbon for longer than most expected in hopes of the best deal possible so it is unlikely they will settle for less than fans would hope for. Although he will be expensive next season, he will be in a contract year which means he will likely be at his best all season which will be beneficial to the Rangers. The Rangers may already be on the phone with Philadelphia regarding Hamels so it would be a smart move to check in on the Papelbon market.
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