It's looking more and more likely that Craig Kimbrel won't be returning to the Red Sox in 2019.
With the Winter Meetings underway in Las Vegas, Dave Dombrowski touched on various topics related to what the team's philosophy will be this offseason. Perhaps the biggest takeaway was the Red Sox' President of Baseball Operations discussing the chances of re-signing closer Craig Kimbrel.
"We're not going to be overly aggressive with big expenditures I don't think for an elite closer at this point," Dombrowski said Monday evening. "Our payroll is pretty high at this point, so without getting specific on him, we're not looking to make a big expenditure in that area. So read that as you may."
Dombrowski mentioned the team feels comfortable moving forward with the bullpen as currently constructed.
"We like a lot of the guys in our bullpen," Dombrowski said. "Brasier did a good job, Barnes did a good job for us, now they've moved Steven Wright out to the bullpen for us with this type of move that we made. We've got Workman, we've got Hembree, we like Bobby Poyner from last year, we like some of our young arms, we picked up Colten Brewer, so somebody that may end up helping us out there any way we can. But I don't have a specific on that; it's somewhat dependent upon cost of acquisition and how there's an acquisition. There's a lot of relievers out there at this point."
Dombrowski acknowledged interest in a reliever, not necessarily a closer but someone with high leverage experience. Said the rotation is set.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) December 10, 2018
Sox manager Alex Cora shared the same sentiment as Dombrowski.
"Obviously with Barnes and Brasier, we feel comfortable they can get outs late in games, so I'm comfortable with the guys we have," Cora said. "We don't have to name a closer going into Spring Training."
The odds of the Red Sox bringing Kimbrel seemed slim once it was revealed the 30-year-old is looking for a six-year contract. As all indications point toward Boston moving on from the 2018 World Series champion closer, they still appear to have multiple free agent relievers on their radar.
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