You know how ppl say things like " Rex Ryan writes checks that his team just can't cash" Basically meaning that someone talks the talk but can't back it up with their play. Well EX Boston Red Sox fan favorite Jonathan Papelbon is one of those guys who is bold, often speaks his mind, and isn't afraid to challenge guys on the mound. He throws a lot of fastballs and always has, but since he has began to get toward the start of his decline it doesn't seem like his ratio of fastball to off-speed is quite as high as it used to be. Some say that's a good thing. It's been said he threw far too many fastballs and eventually when your facing big league hitters they are going to adjust.
Papelbon gave himself somewhat of a clean slate by signing with the Philadelphia Phillies who are in the National League in the off-season. Having pitched in the American League his entire career, hitters will be at a disadvantage to start with the majority having not scene his stuff. Many more have faced him then you'd think though since MLB has been playing those Inter-league AL vs NL games for the past several seasons for a little span that lasts a few weeks.
Jonathan Papelbon Player Page from ESPN.com
ESPN.COM STORY LINK
When Papelbon blew his first save of the season yesterday it was also the first time this year so far that he even gave up an earned run while pitching in a save situation. Papelbon may talk a lot but since he got paid $50 million for signing the 4 year contract with the Phillies he can write checks for pretty much anything he wants.......including for a sure fire Hall of Famer to hit a home run to give you a win after you blew your first save.
Jim Thome hit a pinch hit home run in the bottom of the 9th which allowed the Phillies to re-claim the lead and get the win. Afterwards it's been reported that Papelbon actually told Thome he would give him $5k if he hit a HR when he was in the on deck circle and sure enough, the big guy came through.
So Mr. Thome what kind of present are you going to be giving yourself on Pap anyways??? I have an idea, how about a nice new suit.....you'll need something to wear at the Hall of Fame ceremony in a few years!