Philadelphia Phillies Sign Jonathan Papelbon

BOSTON - FILE: Pitcher Jonathan Papelbon #58 of the Boston Red Sox delivers a pitch against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim in the eighth inning of Game Three of the ALDS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Fenway Park on October 11, 2009 in Boston, Massachusetts. According to reports on November 11, 2011, Papelbon has agreed to a four year contract worth $50 million with the Philadelphia Phillies. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

There's officially a new market for closers, courtesy of the Philadelphia Phillies.  According to Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly.com, the Phillies have reached an agreement with former Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon, pending a physical.  The deal is reportedly for 4 years and just over $50M.

Papelbon, who turns 31 next week, was widely considered the best available closer on the market.  In 2011, Papelbon was 4-1 with a 2.94 ERA and 31 saves.  Perhaps more impressively he had an outstanding walk to strikeout of 12.17 to 1.40.

Apart from setting a new standard for closers in terms of salary, Papelbon has also said he wanted to sign with a team that gives him a good shot at the title.  With his new contract, he has accomplished both his stated goals. 
He represents an upgrade over Ryan Madson who had a deal fall through earlier in the week.

The Red Sox are now on the hunt for a closer -- although they do have an in-house candidate in Daniel Bard.

Question: Did the Phillies pay too much?

Tell us in the comments!

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