Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 1/2/13

Andrew Bailey doesn’t sound like a man who just lost his job. In his mind, he hasn’t. With closer Joel Hanrahan now in the mix in Boston, Bailey will enter spring training in a setup role. Bailey, of course, figured to be the team’s closer before the trade, but Red Sox assistant general manager Brian O’Halloran noted shortly after the Hanrahan deal that their new acquisition would take over the ninth-inning duties. Now, one would think this might not sit well with Bailey. Closers garner much of the recognition when it comes to relievers, and they’re certainly paid much more handsomely. But Bailey noted in a recent conversation with WEEI.com that he’s happy the Red Sox went out and acquired another proven hurler like Hanrahan. “I’m excited to have him. I think it makes our bullpen that much stronger,” Bailey said. “I think ultimately, with how things went last year, with myself being injured, it’s a business. I understand that. I’m excited. I’m excited for the moves we’ve made, not only in the bullpen but all around. I think it’s definitely an addition to our pen and it makes us that much stronger. I think that with me and him going eight, nine, that’s kind of set out in the forefront, I like it and I think it makes us that much stronger. The focus is on winning. It makes our team better. Plus, with everyone else in the pen, it makes us one of the strongest assets on the team.” Boston’s bullpen was middle of the pack in 2012. The unit performed well at times, but the lack of production by the starting rotation ultimately taxed the bullpen far too much. Last season was particularly difficult for Bailey, who didn’t pitch until August because of thumb surgery and who then struggled upon returning. The right-hander had a 7.04 ERA in 19 appearances, perhaps causing Ben Cherington and Co. to take another look at the team’s closer situation. Baily is remaining optimistic despite being bumped out of the closer’s role, though, and he’s hoping that he can stay healthy and contribute throughout all of 2013, regardless of his exact job title. In addition to Hanrahan, the Red Sox have added a number of free agents this offseason, including outfielders Shane Victorino and Jonny Gomes, catcher David Ross, starter Ryan Dempster, reliever Koji Uehara and perhaps catcher/first baseman Mike Napoli. All in all, Bailey likes what he sees. “We have the key components in place. It’s just kind of adding things here and there,” Bailey told WEEI.com. “Talking with Ben and talking with John, when they called me and let me know that the trade was being talked about, everything was focused on winning. As a player, that’s what you want to hear — an organization that is geared towards winning. If that means I have to change roles, so to speak, I get to play baseball for a living and I throw in the eighth inning rather than the ninth inning. “Sure, it’s first priority for all relievers to want to close,” he added. “But it’s not like I’m upset about it or anything. It’s just a tweak in the job description. It’s not the end of anything. It will be good. I’m looking forward to working with [Hanrahan]. I think it’s going to be a great duo down there, and obviously with everyone coming back, it’s going to be awesome. Like I said, there’s going to be a lot of arms to choose from and matchups. It’s going to be a lot of fun.” Bailey spent three seasons as Oakland’s closer before being shipped to Boston in a trade last offseason. He was extremely reliable in that time, earning two All-Star selections in addition to Rookie of the Year honors in 2009. If he’s able to stay healthy and adapt to his new role in 2013, the Red Sox could end up with one of the American League’s most solid bullpens. The Red Sox are hoping that a positive attitude also means positive results.

This article first appeared on NESN.com and was syndicated with permission.

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rob Manfred: No significant rule changes in 2017, blames MLBPA

Report: Zach Britton has potential oblique injury

The Rock returns to WWE, leaves CM Punk a voicemail after 'Raw'

After outfield collision, Ichiro pranks teammate and claims he’s been cut

Simeon Rice gets vulgar with radio host over HOF debate

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Ronda Rousey to be guest star on NBC’s ‘Blindspot’

Lakers replace Jim Buss with Magic Johnson, fire Kupchak

Report: James Harrison, Steelers share mutual interest in 2017 return

Jimmy Garoppolo’s mom keeping him up to speed on his trade rumors

Report: Clippers intent on keeping both Blake Griffin, Chris Paul

Slam dunks and startups: How all-star technology took over the NBA in The Big Easy

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

Box Score 2/21: It's trade heartbreak season

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams and players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Movies you can stream now to get your football fix

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Nintendo is finally, thankfully embracing sports and eSports

The 'Did the Kings just make the Pelicans into a super team?' quiz

Will the Timberwolves start showcasing their potential?

'Playmakers' in Ice Cube's league who can help the Cavs

QUIZ: Name every MLB pitcher to win 100 games with two different teams

The guard tandems you'd want in a 2-on-2 tournament

We got our hands on the new Nintendo Switch, here are our first impressions

Top 10 second basemen in baseball for 2017

Teams, players who could be dealing at the NBA trade deadline

As NHL trade deadline nears, seven teams who could be dealing

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker