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Jonathan Papelbon

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Jonathan Robert Papelbon

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[edit] Biographical Information

Boston Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon set a record for most successful save opportunities by a rookie to start a season in 2006, when he earned his 17th save.

Papelbon was originally drafted by the Red Sox in the 4th round of the 2003 amateur draft. He was signed by scout Joe Mason and made his pro debut that summer.

Papelbon became the quickest player in major league history to reach 200 saves when he recorded the milestone save in his 359th appearance, against the New York Yankees on June 7, 2011. Mariano Rivera has set the mark before him, needing 382 games to get to 200 saves. He recorded his 300th save on June 10, 2014, by which time he was pitching for the Philadelphia Phillies. Having needed 552 games, he was second-fastest to that level, after Trevor Hoffman and was the 26th to attain the figure. On September 1, he completed a combined no-hitter over the Atlanta Braves by pitching a perfect 9th inning, after Cole Hamels, Jake Diekman and Ken Giles had kept the Braves from getting a hit through the first eight innings. While there was no save at stake with a 7-0 lead, the pressure was there given he did not wish to let his teammates down; he got Jose Constanza to fly out to left, and then forced Chris Johnson to ground out and Phil Gosselin to line out to 1B Darin Ruf to complete the rare feat. The usual calm Papelbon lost his cool on September 14th when he blew a 9th-inning 4-1 lead against the Miami Marlins; after the go-ahead run scored on a wild pitch, the crowd got on his back and he gestured to them in frustration, prompting umpire Joe West to eject him. While the Phillies were having a forgettable season, Papelbon was as good as ever, as he had racked up 37 saves with an ERA of 1.57 heading into the contest, so the meltdown was completely out of character. For his part Papelbon, said that whatever irked the officials had been inadvertent and was not intended as an inappropriate gesture. The Commissioner's office did not buy this explanation, however, and Papelbon was handed a fine and a seven-game suspension for his gesture, but Joe West was also handed a one-game suspension, for grabbing Papelbon's jersey and making the incident worse than it should have been.

Papelbon's brothers, twins Jeremy and Josh, played baseball at the University of North Florida. Jeremy was selected by the Chicago Cubs in the 19th round of the 2006 Amateur Draft, while Josh was picked by the Boston Red Sox in the 48th round that year.

[edit] Notable Achievements

  • 5-time All-Star (2006-2009 & 2012)
  • 30 Saves Seasons: 8 (2006-2012 & 2014)
  • 40 Saves Seasons: 1 (2008)
  • Won a World Series with the Boston Red Sox in 2007.

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