As my fellow writer HoJo’s Mojo reported that Billy Wagner had been claimed off waivers by the Boston RedSox, we have heard from Boston’s closer Jonathon Papelbon.
“What has he done? Has he pitched this year?” Jonathan Papelbon told WEEI.com. “Is he ready to pitch or is he not? … I think our bullpen is good where we’re at right now. Don’t get me wrong. But I guess you could always make it better. It’s kind of like the [Eric] Gagne thing, I guess.”
Equating a potential free-agent acquisition to the fateful trade for Gagne in 2007 isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement from the team’s closer, and Papelbon wasn’t alone.
“We loved Gagne coming over here, just the stuff that he had, but it was an awkward situation this late in the season,” Manny Delcarmen told WEEI.com. “I think our bullpen is fine right now. It is what it is. If [Wagner] comes and helps us win, that’s what we want. But sometimes, shaking things up this late might work out different. We’ll see what happens.”
But of course Wagner wasn’t going to keep quite either about possibly being traded and about Papelbon. Wagner said he “loved Boston” but also said he doesn’t expect to go. He didn’t stop there though…
reacting to Papelbon’s not warm quote about him, Wagner said, “I don’t have anything to say about somebody like that. When he walks in my shoes then I’ll say something. Let him be 38 and have Tommy John surgery “
Wagner could be traded to Boston by Tuesday, has recorded 385 saves and 1,068 strikeouts in his career. He has only pitched once in 2009 — a scoreless inning against the Braves on Thursday night — and missed the last two months of 2008 with an injury. He underwent Tommy John surgery last September and, based on his performance this week, appears to have regained his velocity.