The Jonathan Papelbon era is over.
For some, it is a sad occasion. Many will miss his Southern drawl and foot-in-mouth honesty. For others, it’s good riddance to a man who came here to win, and turned on the fans when his team let him down.
But one thing is for sure, the Nationals are getting a 34-year-old reliever on top of his game.
Pap, fresh off an All-Star bid, has converted all 17 of his save opportunities, with a 1.59 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 39 2/3 innings. If he appears in 14 more games, a vesting $13 million option will kick in.
To make room for him, the Phils division foes will move Drew Storen, who has 29 saves of his own to setup man.
The Phillies willget, according to Todd Zolecki,a big, lanky6-foot-5 hurler in Nick Pivetta. The Double-A pitcher is 22-years-old and started the season as the No. 5 ranked pitcher in the Washington system.
A Canadian, he was a member of the country’s 18U Junior Team. In 18 starts for the Harrisburg Senators, Pivetta has gone 7-6 with a respectable 3.02 ERA. He has struck out 78 while walking 38.
As for the biggest prize on the Philles, Cole Hamelswill not be traded until later this week (if he is at all). Many reports have said the Phillies are asking for team’s best offers by Wednesday. The Astros, Dodgers and Rangers are reportedly the top contenders for the left-hander.