His body of work as a closer for the Red Sox had its warts, but overall you can't deny that he has been one of the best in baseball.

Which is why the respected talent evaluators of the Philadelphia Phillies discarded their own guys (Ryan Madson and Brad Lidge) and made Jonathan Papelbon the highest-paid reliever in baseball with a stunning four-year, $50 million deal in the offseason.

People tend to be opinionated about Papelbon and his new contract, which some believe is far too much for a closer. He was a guy who said a few dumb things along the way, but he was one of the most committed players on the Red Sox, and that includes last year's team.

Papelbon now is being asked to preserve wins for a very talented rotation led by Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, and Cole Hamels. The three of them are thrilled to have Papelbon on the team.