Battle for final two bullpen spots

If you work under the assumption that Jon Lester, John Lackey, Clay Buchholz, Josh Beckett, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Jonathan Papelbon, Daniel Bard, Bobby Jenks, Dan Wheeler and Tim Wakefield are the 10 pitchers who are sure to make the team, that leaves two spots open.

There are a barrage of lefties in the mix for those spots, including Hideki Okajima, Dennys Reyes, Andrew Miller and Rich Hill. Righies Alfredo Aceves, Scott Atchision and Matt Albers are also in the competition.

With so many pitchers going for so few spots, the Red Sox will huddle after Tuesday’s game to determine how best to utilize the innings for the final week the team is in Fort Myers.

“After the game tonight, I think [pitching coach] Curt [Young] and I, and [general manager] Theo [Epstein] and some guys from the front office will kind of sit and talk and not just talk about how we feel about things, but maybe map out the next couple of days. We’re getting to a point where innings are going to be at a premium so certainly there are going to have to be some innings at the minor league complex and innings in big league games. we’ll sit and map that out tonight.”

Francona isn’t sure exactly when the pitching staff will be finalized.

“I’d rather do it right than have to set an arbitrary deadline,” Francona said.


I’m not feeling the warm fuzzies about the S.P. So far nobody has been shining as of late, but of all people, Dice-K. Even Lackey has faltered, but at a great offensive team. Either way, I’m concerned about the arms this year. If any one of them gets hurt it would be terrible. No question the Sox have things to work out in the weeks to come.
Finally my heart goes out to Japan. It is terrible.

I would choose Okajima to fill one of those bullpen spots. Also, I too wish only the best for our Japanese brothers and sisters. Okajima San is ichiban!

I would choose Okajima to fill one of those bullpen spots. Also, I too wish only the best for our Japanese brothers and sisters. Okajima San is ichiban!

Reyes’ weight is too much of a concern to keep him on the roster and I believe he has an out coming up at the end of this week. Miller is headed to Pawtucket and has a contract structured in such a way that a team who picks him up must pay him a good chunk of money. For both the Sox and his sake, let’s hope he is not picked up. I think Okajima is headed out the door. What made him great was his bizarre delivery and now that everyones seen it, its not as effective as it once was. While Francona has some sort of bromance with Atchison, the guy looks like he could be as old as Tito. I think Hill and Aceves make the most sense. Admittedly, I don’t know a whole lot about Albers, and I’d admit that who ever we drop has a good chance of being picked up by another AL east team which is disconcerting.

Will the Sox win another ST game? The SPs are horrible in the spring despite great early going. I hope Aceves will make to the roster.
Hi Greg: Good luck with your Marquette tonight and upset NC. A colleague from the office is going to see the game at Prudential Center in Newark. I believe Ohio State is playing as well. Two great games.

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