With the uncertainty surrounding Andrew Bailey's injured thumb, ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes appeared on "Baseball Tonight" to try to shed some light on the situation (see video above).
To this point, the Red Sox have been very vague about the nature and severity of Bailey's injury, with Bobby Valentine saying little more than Bailey will be out "a while." Edes takes that to mean Bailey will be out "an extended period, could be a couple of months, maybe even more."
As to who will fill the closer role for the Red Sox, Edes figures the two options are Daniel Bard and Alfredo Aceves. Both were being considered for the starting rotation as recently as this weekend, with Bard being named to the No. 5 spot.
Edes says there appears to be little question that Aceves has the mental makeup to handle the high-pressure role and that members of the organization discussed using Aceves as the closer this winter.
With superior stuff, Bard has the greater potential upside, Edes says, but he adds that whether members of the front-office have concerns about Bard's makeup to handle the role is "a legitimate question since they didn't make him the closer after Jonathan Papelbon left" as a free agent.
So what does Edes think the Sox should do? His pick is Bard as the closer, Aceves to set him up and perhaps Vicente Padilla to replace Bard in the rotation. But GM Ben Cherington later told NESN that Bard is staying in the rotation, at least for now.