In an inning and a third of work against the Marlins today, Jonathan Papelbon secured his 25th save of the season, a new Reed Sox rookie record. The previous record had been held by Dick Radatz since 1962, a 44 year span.
Once again, Papelbon looked impressive and continued to baffle hitters, surrendering no runs, no hits, one walk and whiffing one batter, en route to a 4-3 Sox victory.
The rookie phenom has converted an impressive 25 of 27 save opportunities this season, and will likely be named to his first All Star team today.
Incredibly, the hard-throwing youngster is now tied for ninth, along with Lee Smith (1989) and Radatz (1963), on the Red Sox single-season saves list.
Next up, with 27 saves each, are Jeff Reardon (1992) and Ellis Kinder (1953), in 8th place on the list.
As promised, I will continue to update Papelbon's performances and chart his progress as he moves up the list. He has a genuine shot at 50 saves this year, which would be the top performance by any Sox closer in team history. With each successive outing, Papelbon continues to make his case for Rookie of the Year. As it stands, the Louisiana native's 20 successful save opportunities to start this season are an MLB rookie record.
Here's a look at the Red Sox all-time single-season saves leaders:
1. Tom Gordon - 46 saves in 1998
2. Derek Lowe - 42 saves in 2000
T- 3.Ugueth Urbina - 40 saves in 2002
Jeff Reardon - 40 saves 1991
T- 4. Jeff Russell - 33 saves in 1993
Bob Stanley - 33 saves 1n 1983
5. Keith Foulke - 32 saves in 2004
T- 6. Heathcliff Slocumb - 31 saves in 1996
Bill Campbell - 31 saves in 1977
T- 7. Lee Smith - 29 saves in 1988
Dick Radatz - 29 saves in 1964
T- 8. Jeff Reardon - 27 saves in 1992
Ellis Kinder - 27 saves in 1953
T- 9. Jonathan Papelbon - 25 saves in 2006
Lee Smith - 25 saves in 1989
Dick Radatz - 25 saves in 1963
T- 10. Derek Lowe - 24 saves in 2001
Tom Burgmeier - 24 Saves in 1980
Dick Radatz - 24 saves in 1962