Felix Doubront suggests bullpen may not be for him

Rob Bradford
September 11, 2013 - 8:59 pm

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Speaking before the Red Sox' 7-3 win over the Rays on Wednesday night at Tropicana Field, Felix Doubront suggested that the Sox might have better options than himself when looking for potential postseason relievers. Doubront, who has been skipped in the starting rotation after suffering through two straight poor outings (a combined 10 runs in 7 1/3 innings), has been thought to be a candidate to help out in the bullpen if a move from the rotation is necessitated. "We've got nasty guys who can do it," Doubront said. "I can be another one, but I think these guys deserve to be in that position, to be that reliever they need in those situations. I can do it, but I think the priority is them. They've been in the bullpen a long time, not me." Part of Doubront's reluctance regarding a move to the bullpen stems from needing a significant amount of time to get ready. The lefty has experienced shoulder problems as recently as this past spring training, and he hasn't known anything but life a starter since 2011. "If they said, 'Go to the bullpen and warm up right now,' I can't do that," he added. "I can't do that right now. I have to wait for a couple of batters or one inning. But being quick, like those guys right now, I can't." The Red Sox believed Doubront had potential to help the team down the stretch in 2010, prioritizing his skill set over the other minor league option (Michael Bowden). That season the lefty ended up making nine relief appearances (all in August) before being shut down. This time, however, Doubront views it differently. "I don't think so," said the pitcher when asked if he believed he would be the best option to help out in the bullpen. "If they want me to, I'm going to be there. But that's not what I want." Doubront is still hoping to throw 20-30 more innings as a starter this season before adding to his foundation via a possible stint in a winter league. It's all part of the goal of building toward a 200-inning season. "[Two hundred innings] is the goal. This year that was the goal. I couldn't do it," said Doubront, who has totaled 154 frames after managing 161 in 2011. " But still, I did a little more than last year."