Phillies closer Giles thinks he will be ‘great’ as Papelbon’s successor

Philadelphia Phillies new closer Ken Giles didn’t have to wait long to prove he’s a worthy successor to Jonathan Papelbon.

Giles earned his first save of the season less than two hours after the Phillies traded All-Star closer Papelbon to the Washington Nationals on Tuesday night. He credited Papelbon for grooming him for his new role and certainly wasn’t lacking for confidence despite notching only his second career save.

"I can’t thank him enough for guiding me through the way of the closer," Giles said of Papelbon. "I think I’m going to be a great closer."

The hard-throwing Giles twice reached triple digits on the radar gun to finish off a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays. He allowed one hit and surrendered a pair of long flyouts in a scoreless ninth inning.

"The first one is the hardest," said Giles, who lowered his ERA to 1.81. "And even though I did it last year, I was way more nervous in this one, because I was the guy, I needed to get three outs to conserve that win."