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Papelbon: Of course I want to stay in Boston

06.18.09 at 5:13 pm ET
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In a wide-ranging interview with SiriusXM Radio on Thursday afternoon, Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon said he wants to stay in Boston long term but needs to look out for his own best interests.

Papelbon was asked if he would ever consider playing for the Yankees if the Red Sox don’t re-sign him prior to free agency following the 2011 season.

“Oh, of course,” Papelbon told Jody MacDonald and Bert Blyleven. “I mean, I think if we can’t come to an agreement on terms here in a Red Sox uniform, I mean I think that’s pretty much the writing on the wall. If they can’t come to terms with you they’re letting you know that, ‘Hey you know what? We can go somewhere else’ and I think it’s the same way on the other side, ‘Hey if ya’ll can’t come to an agreement with me then I can go somewhere else.’

“Not only the Bronx, but anywhere. I think anywhere is a possibility. You always have to keep that in the back of your mind because you can’t just be one-sided and think that, ‘Oh I’m going to be in a Red Sox uniform my entire career,’ because nowadays that is very, very rare and hopefully we can because there’s no question I would love to stay in a Boston Red Sox uniform but I have to do what’s best for me and play in an atmosphere where I’m wanted and play on a team where I’m wanted and that’s all I can really say about that, you know?”

The Red Sox control the right-handed closer through the 2011 season.

With Joba Chamberlain still starting in New York for the Yankees, Papelbon said he has no interest or intention of making a pitch to move back to the starting rotation anytime soon, saying that his days in between starts in 2006 made him “crazy.”

He also said that the Red Sox have a great clubhouse that helps keep players like him on an even keel, and that manager Terry Francona has done a great job of keeping the bullpen fresh.

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