So in 2 1/3 innings so far, the Red Sox $4MM heavily favored "closer", Joel Pineiro, has been lit up to the tune of 6 hits, 5 Rs, with 4 of them of the earned variety. Some of the other candidates include:
Devern Hansack (as reported by P. Gammons in Dec.)
Hansen just this past weekend underwent a precautionary MRI, and is on a long toss program that dictates nervousness at this early stage of ST.
Timlin, who was overused last year and had an awful 2nd half(2.59 era pre-All Star Break, 6.06 after), is a guy who can be depended on, but must be limited in terms of back-to-back-to back days that will wear him down. He is, at the age of 41 on March 10th, prone to breaking down.
Donnelly, who I must admit I own in my AL-only league, is a compelling candidate to close if only because of the praise David Ortiz has heaped on him, saying he always hated to bat against him. He too, however, comes with his warts. He posted his worst era of his career last year (3.97), and at the age of 35, he is no spring chicken either.
It makes you wonder if a trade is in the works that may involve Wily Mo, or if the brass feels comfortable with the 'pen as it is currently constituted. With over $200MM spent this off-season, though, if it becomes an issue during the season I can't see how they wouldn't be willing to go out and make a deal for a frontline closer the minute one becomes available.
What do you guys think of this situation?