Despite having great memories at Coors Field — memories which include a World Series championship with the Boston Red Sox in 2007 — Jonathan Papelbon has absolutely no interest in playing for the Colorado Rockies, according to a report Wednesday afternoon from ESPN.com.
In the report, ESPN Senior Writer Jerry Crasnick obtained the 17 teams which are on the Washington Nationals' closer's no-trade list in his contract, including, not surprisingly, these Rockies.
The full no-trade list: Arizona Diamondbacks, Baltimore Orioles, Cleveland Indians, Colorado Rockies, Chicago White Sox, Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Miami Marlins, Milwaukee Brewers, Minnesota Twins, New York Yankees, Oakland Athletics, Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants, Texas Rangers and Toronto Blue Jays.
Obviously, that leaves 12 teams which Papelbon finds to be acceptable landing spots should he be traded: Atlanta Braves, Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, Houston Astros, Kansas City Royals, Los Angeles Angels, New York Mets, St. Louis Cardinals, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners and Tampa Bay Rays.
Of course, this isn't particularly newsy for the Rockies outside of having the club named on yet another pitcher's no-trade list. Papelbon, 35, wasn't awful on the field for the Nationals in 2015, but his best days as a closer are absolutely behind him.
That he choked a certain teammate while in Washington is, um, a rather undesirable aspect of his game, to say the least. But had that never happened, and had the Rockies not been on Papelbon's no-trade list in the first place, there's little to be gained by the Rockies trading for a 35-year-old reliever right now, anyways — especially one who's been a clubhouse problem in the past.
More interestingly, at least in the frame of the NL West, is Papelbon refusing to be shipped off to four teams in the division, leaving only the Padres a potential partner. Crasnick reports that Papelbon provides an "annual" list of teams for his no-trade clause, but doesn't say when the closer submitted the list. I'd be interested to know when Papelbon submitted his list relative to major NL West moves like the Padres trading Joaquin Benoit to the Mariners and Craig Kimbrel to the Red Sox, and the Diamondbacks acquiring Zack Greinke and Shelby Miller.
Either way, if Papelbon doesn't get moved to one of his desirable new franchises, it's all going to be an... interesting... season in D.C. under new manager Dusty Baker.
The Rockies play the Nationals in Denver from August 15-17, and in Washington from August 26-28.
You suuuure you don't want to come to Coors Field, Jonathan?