The Phillies all-time leader in saves threw out the first pitch prior to Game 3 of the American League Championship Series between the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros.
Papelbon had an ERA under three in each of his three full seasons with the Phillies, but his legacy and loyalty lies with Boston. He spent seven seasons with the Red Sox and was on the mound when Boston clinched the 2007 World Series at Coors Field.
Papelbon ran out from the bullpen to the mound to the tune of his old walk-out music, Dropkick Murphys’ “I’m Shipping Up to Boston.” He took the signs from Kevin Plawecki and threw a 91 mph fastball. With the way both teams in the series are going through pitchers, the retired reliever could be called upon to suit up in the near future.
Papelbon signed a four-year, $50 million contract with the Phillies in November 2011. His 2.31 ERA with the team is the lowest in franchise history among relievers with at least 200 innings pitched for Philadelphia, but his reputation in the city isn’t all that flattering. Papelbon received a seven-game suspension in 2014 for making a lewd gesture toward fans and bumping umpire Joe West during a game against the Miami Marlins on Sept. 14, 2014.
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