Papelbon ‘Didn’t Come Here for This’

Could Jonathan Papelbon's second season in Philadelphia be his last?

Could Jonathan Papelbon’s second season in Philadelphia be his last?

On Sunday before the Phillies 12-4 loss to the Detroit Tigers, closer Jonathan Papelbon sat down Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. Papelbon is undeniably one of Philadelphia’s more outspoken athletes and despite his short time with the team, he does not seem shy about making his opinions known.

Papelbon told Zolecki that he “definitely didn’t come here for this,” in response to the team’s recent play.

The comments come as the team is in the midst of an  8-game losing streak that may signal the end of the team’s postseason hopes for 2013.

Papelbon went on to give his take on what may be necessary to turn this franchise around.

“It’s going to take, in my opinion, a lot. And in my opinion, I think it’s going to have to be something very similar to what the Red Sox went through a couple years ago. From top to bottom,” said Papelbon. He also added that explaining the team’s issues could be a task that takes all day.

Ruben Amaro was all smiles when he brought Papelbon to the Phillies.

Ruben Amaro Jr. was all smiles when he brought Papelbon to the Phillies.

If any player on the Phillies current roster would have experience in top to bottom franchise dismantling it would be Papelbon. In 2011, the Red Sox entered the final month of the season in first place only to collapse and wind up missing the playoffs. This led to a number of key Red Sox leaving the organization including General Manager Theo Epstein and Manager Terry Francona.

That was just two seasons ago and now the Red Sox are back to playing good baseball as they currently have the best AL record and the most wins in Major League Baseball (63).

Interestingly enough, one of those major pieces that the Red Sox moved in their dismantling was Papelbon. The team opted not to bring him back the same offseason Ruben Amaro Jr. and the Phillies decided to give him a 4-year deal worth $50 million.

The team has declined to comment on Papelbon’s remarks.

Papelbon is 2-0 with a 2.21 era and 20 saves in 25 opportunities this season.

Papelbon is 2-0 with a 2.21 era and 20 saves in 25 opportunities this season.

Papelbon was asked if he wanted to leave Philadelphia and gave this answer:

“No, I would like to stay here. But if I’m going to have to put up with this year after year, then no, I don’t want to be here. Why would you? Why would anybody?”

There is dwindling interest in Papelbon right now around baseball. He has recorded 20 saves this season in 25 opportunities and his age is starting to show when it comes to his velocity. His performance, coupled with less than flattering remarks about his team, do not make the expensive closer a hot commodity on the trade market.

Maybe the Phillies should take a page out of the Red Sox book and rid themselves of Papelbon if it’s still possible. It seemed to work for them.

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