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Phillies trade closer Jonathan Papelbon to Nationals

The Philadelphia Phillies have traded closer Jonathan Papelbon to the Washington Nationals.
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The Philadelphia Phillies have traded closer Jonathan Papelbon to the Washington Nationals, the teams announced on Tuesday.

In return, the Phillies received minor-league righthander Nick Pivetta. The Nationals also announced they agreed to a contract for 2016 with Papelbon and designated catcher Dan Butler for assignment.

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal previously reported that Papelbon would step in as closer and be under contract for the 2016 season, and that he was taking less money to join Washington.

Papelbon holds a $13 million option for next season that becomes guaranteed after he finishes 14 more games. 

ReportslinkedPapelbon to the Nationals over the past few days. The closer held limited no-trade rights and said multiple times that he would not go to a team that would not allow him to maintain his ninth-inning job. The Nationals’ incumbent closer, Drew Storen, holds a 1.73 ERA and 1.02 WHIP this season, converting on 29 of 31 save chances.

Papelbon, 34, has converted all 17 of his save opportunities this season for the Phillies, with a 1.59 ERA and 0.98 WHIP and 40 strikeouts in 39 2/3 innings.

The Phillies are reportedly continuing trade talks surrounding lefthander Cole Hamels leading up to Friday’s 4 p.m. non-waiver trade deadline.

Pivetta, 22, was a fourth-round pick in the 2013 MLB First-Year Player Draft out of New Mexico Junior College. Over 18 games and 17 starts between High A Potomac and Dougle A Harrisburg, he went 7–6 with a 3.02 ERA.

Jeremy Woo and Mike Fiammetta