Jonathan Papelbon had the worst season of his career. Don't be swayed by his pretty little 1-1 record or his 1.95 ERA. He had a career high in walks (24), WHIP (1.15), and was only four hits shy of his career high in hits allowed, set last year. He also set many other career highs in 2008 (ERA, earned runs, and opponents batting average).
Is this just a rough two-season stretch? Or the start of the potential downfall of Papelbon's career?
The Red Sox might trade Papelbon.
They have young flamethrower Daniel Bard waiting in the shadows. If the Red Sox do trade Papelbon, it would be a pure Moneyball move, a move which was even mentioned multiple times in the book: selling the closer.
Think about what they could get for Papelbon: an outfielder to replace Jason Bay (if need be), a steady shortstop, and maybe a young catcher or another reliever.
To me (and to other people who have read Moneyball) trading Papelbon makes sense. I wouldn't trade him to any team in the American League East. Other than that, every team is fair game.
Would the Red Sox be better off without Paps? What do you think, Red Sox Nation?