4 Former Red Sox Boston Can Sign For a Reunion in 2024

Chaim Bloom made plenty of questionable decisions by letting popular Red Sox walk. Can Craig Breslow bring any of them back?
Boston Red Sox Chief Baseball Officer Craig Breslow
Boston Red Sox Chief Baseball Officer Craig Breslow / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages
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Craig Kimbrel
Craig Kimbrel / Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

2. Craig Kimbrel

Already solidified as one of the best closers in MLB history, Craig Kimbrel is a nine-time MLB All-Star and has captured three Reliever of the Year awards across his decorated 14-year MLB career.

Acquired via an offseason trade in November 2015, Kimbrel pitched three seasons with the Red Sox (2016-2018) and took home all-star honors in each of those seasons. He capped off his career in a Red Sox uniform with a World Series ring in 2018 before departing in free agency to the Chicago Cubs.

In Boston, Kimbrel racked up 108 saves, a 2.44 ERA, and 14.9 strikeouts per nine innings across three seasons.

With the Philadelphia Phillies in May, Kimbrel became just the eighth player in MLB history to reach the 400 save plateau, and now ranks eighth on the all-time list. Ironically, he is only three saves behind current Red Sox closer Kenley Jansen. In 71 games last season, Kimbrel recorded a 6-8 record, a 3.26 ERA, and converted 23 of his 28 save opportunities.

Although a seventh, eighth and ninth inning bullpen setup of Chris Martin, Kimbrel, and Kenley Jansen would have manager Alex Cora feeling comfortable with a lead, it is fair to ask if Kimbrel would accept a non-closing role at this stage of his career.

In the Phillies' NLCS match-up against the Arizona Diamondbacks, Kimbrel struggled mightily at the back-end of the Philadelphia bullpen, blowing a save, losing two games and recording a 12 ERA. Arizona prevailed in seven games, ending the Phillies' season.

It will be interesting to see if the devastating end of his season makes the Phillies front office more inclined to let him walk in free agency.