The Bullpen As Tito Sees It...In A Nutshell
This is from the Wednesday Herald, continuing the theme of the earlier post. The subject? What many feel is THE glaring weakness of our 2007 Boston Red Sox.....th...th..th...the bullpen.
"In all likelihood, former Seattle Mariners starter Joel Pineiro will end up as the closer but Francona said the decision will be made in spring training, with the choice most likely coming down to Pineiro, Mike Timlin [stats], Julian Tavarez or Brendan Donnelly.
“Those are the four guys we want to see throw some innings late in the game,” he said. “As we go into the spring, we’ll tell them how we feel, what we’re looking for and then we’ll put it together. The hope would be by the end of camp we’ve got roles for everybody. It doesn’t always work that way but if they pitch well and throw strikes, it will work that way. Then there’s (Craig) Hansen and (Manny) Delcarmen. Where they fit in, we honestly don’t know. The way they pitch will tell us.”
Peter here. "..we honestly don't know..." Honest words from an honest guy. Our skipper. The entire article can be found by clicking on the title. Tito is incredibly forthcoming in his assessment of what might be the Achilles Heel of our '07 Sox. I for one cannot see Mike Timlin as a season-long answer to the role of closer. Yes, there is a surplus of arms, good arms, young AND old. In Mike Timlin's case, too old to remain healthy throughout an entire 162 game schedule...up and down, 3 or 4 games in a row and then maybe a week or so of sitting. Nope, uh uh. He has to be used more carefully...and there would be nothing worse than having to rely on MORE than one guy who will come in and NAIL DOWN a one run victory in the ninth. 2003 proved that that is a recipe for disaster and mayhem.
Jonathon Papelbon set the bar last year with his unbelievableness. And that's what it was. Can we expect someone to reach those heights this year? To be realistic, NO! But can someone step up and approach his numbers? Our entire season depends on it. Read the full article...click on the title. And thanks for being here. As always.