Monday, November 9, 2009

Rogers: Astros may need Wagner

With Jose Valverde's impending free agency, the Chicago Tribune's Phil Rogers speculates on the future of Billy Wagner:

The Cubs don't have much payroll space, and they may prefer to go with Carlos Marmol as their closer. Then again, they wouldn't do so a year ago when Marmol was coming off a good season. The Cubs could offer Wagner a chance to close, as could the Orioles, Rays, Tigers, Angels, and Braves. Even Wagner's old teams, the Phillies and Astros, have back-end bullpen concerns.

My take: The Sox could use Guerrero or another RBI guy to lessen the load on Paul Konerko, the often-injured Carlos Quentin and Gordon Beckham. But Williams seems to want a left-handed hitter and will steer away from base-clogging types, like Guerrero. Wagner makes sense for the Cubs only they've had enough of Carlos Marmol. He did a solid job as the closer once Lou Piniella gave him the job. I'd stick with him for 2010. But he would have some trade value. Wagner will want to close wherever he goes, so to have him and Marmol in the same bullpen isn't a good idea.

So if Chicago is out, and the Astros need a closer, would you want them to sign Billy Wagner?