The Next Closer

World Series - Boston Red Sox v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game Three
Credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images North America

After this past postseason, I think I (and many fans) feel comfortable in saying this: Craig Kimbrel should not be re-signed.

After the troubles and mini heart attacks he gave us all in October, I think an alternative is ideal.  Costs for this Red Sox team will soon become an issue, and I do not think the contract Kimbrel will warrant on the open market is one the Red Sox can dish out.  The Red Sox have over $156 million on the books for nine players on the 25-man roster, and this does not include a bevy of players contractually tied to the team through arbitration-determined salaries (meaning Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr., Andrew Benintendi, Xander Bogaerts, Eduardo Rodriguez, etc.)

In addition to Kimbrel, the following 2018 Red Sox are free agents: Nathan Eovaldi, Joe Kelly, Ian Kinsler, Steve Pearce, Drew Pomeranz, Brandon Phillips.

It’s not easy to pay everyone after winning a championship, and some fan favorites will not be back next season.  Since I hope Kimbrel is one, lets look at who I think should be considered to replace him.

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