Source: Jenks to be Red Sox’s setup man
Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford weren’t enough for the Red Sox.
The team, seeking to fortify its bullpen, has reached agreement with free-agent right-hander Bobby Jenks on a two-year, $12 million contract, according to a major-league source.
Jenks will set up for Jonathan Papelbon along with Daniel Bard. Either Jenks or Bard could move into the closer’s role if Papelbon departs as a free agent, as expected, at the end of the season.
The White Sox declined to offer Jenks a contract, fearing his salary would approach or exceed $10 million in arbitration.
Jenks has the chance to earn more with performance bonuses. He saved 27 games last season but lost his closing job at the end of the year when he struggled with injuries.
The Red Sox’s deal, which is pending a physical, was first reported by SI.com and ESPN.com.
Jenks was second in White Sox history with 173 saves since joining Chicago midseason in 2005 and helping the club win its first World Series since 1917. He had four saves in the postseason, pitching in all four Series games during a sweep of the Houston Astros.
Jenks saved 81 games over the next two years. But last season, when he earned $7.5 million, he missed the final 27 games with ulnar neuritis in his right forearm. General manager Kenny Williams said he would consider bringing Jenks back at a lower salary.
In addition, the Red Sox agreed to an $875,000, one-year contract with right-handed reliever Matt Albers and sent utilityman Eric Patterson to the San Diego Padres to complete the trade for first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.
Albers was 5-3 with a 4.52 ERA in 62 appearances with Baltimore last season. His deal guarantees him $400,000.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.