Pap will trade in his Phillies 'P' for a 'W' now down in Washington
Jonathan Papelbon finally found a new team that he wanted to be traded to, it's none other than the Phillies division rivals, Washington Nationals.
It's not unprecedented, quality closers have been traded before among division rivals, but the notion that the Phillies are now going to face one of the top closers of the game is now something that may happen often against Papelbon's old team.
The last time a relief pitcher of Papelbon's quality went between division rivals was when the Phillies saw Billy Wagner sign as a free agent with the Mets back in 2006. Wagner had a 1.51 ERA in 2005 for the Phillies and recorded 38 saves.
In 2006 with the Mets, Wagner was the closer deep into the playoffs, but in 3 game appearances in the NLCS for the Mets, Wagner faltered, and turned in a 16.88 ERA giving up 7 H and 5 ER in the process as the Mets lost to the Cardinals in that series that did go 7 games.
Another blockbuster trade between NL East rivals of course was the time when the NY Mets sent closer Tug McGraw to the Phillies. On December 3 1974, Tug was traded to the Phillies by the Mets and went on to have a great career that culminated with a 1980 World Series victory for the Phillies with Tug closing out the win for the team. McGraw's ERA in 1980 was 1.46 in 57 G with the Phils. In the 1980 World Series, Tug's ERA was a stingy 1.17 in 4 G and 7.2 IP, he did have 8 BB and 10 SO in the World Series for the Phils.
So Jonathan Papelbon will be travelling through Philadelphia at least a few more times this season, and many times next year as it was announced that the Nationals would be extending Papelbon's contract into 2016.
His act has now taken onto a new city, in the process of staying for just short of 4 years in Philly, he became the Phillies all-time saves leader with a total of 123. Ocho Cinco is not a member of the Phillies anymore, but we will be seeing him quite often and that's a bit daunting.