Jonathan Papelbon: Phillies fans “tend to know the game a little better” than Red Sox fans

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Not only is Jonathan Papelbon ditching “Shipping Up To Boston” as his entrance music, now he’s talking about how Phillies fans are better than Red Sox fans.

During an interview on 94-WIP in Philadelphia today Papelbon said:

The difference between Boston and Philadelphia, the Boston fans are a little bit more hysterical when it comes to the game of baseball. The Philly fans tend to know the game a little better, being in the National League, you know, the way the game is played.

I’m not sure how Papelbon came to have such a clear opinion of Phillies fans already considering he signed with the team in November and has yet to actually play a game in Philadelphia, but maybe that’s just nit-picking and Papelbon did indicate that he liked the “hysterical” nature of Boston because “it got my motor running every day.”

You know, because Philadelphia sports fans have long been known for their calm demeanor and reasoned opinions about star athletes.

Report: Angels to sign Cody Allen

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Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Angels and reliever Cody Allen are in agreement on a one-year contract, pending a physical. The value of the contract is not yet known.

Allen, 30, was looking for an opportunity to close and the Angels can certainly provide that. He will likely be the favorite to break camp as the closer. 2018 was the roughest year of his career, however, as he finished with a 4.70 ERA, 27 saves, and a 80/33 K/BB ratio in 67 innings. Among Allen’s six full seasons, his 27.7 strikeout rate and 11.4 percent walk rate represented career-worsts. FanGraphs also shows him losing nearly a full MPH on his average fastball velocity.

The Angels lost closer Keynan Middleton to Tommy John surgery early last season and he likely won’t return until the second half of the 2019 season. Blake Parker, who handled save situations in Middleton’s place, was non-tendered by the Angels in November and ended up signing with the Twins. The closer’s role is Allen’s to lose, it seems.