Frank Francisco unsure about Opening Day, says Parnell is closer

Frank Francisco polaroidFrank Francisco threw from a mound for a second time this week, though he said he’s still not sure he’ll be ready for Opening Day.

“He is the closer,” Francisco said, motioning to Bobby Parnell’s locker, according to the New York Post.

“I can’t even pitch right now. When I’m back, it’s whatever they are going to give me. I’m here, they pay me and I do what they say. If they want me to be the mop, I’ll be the mop. If they want me to be The Man out there, I’ll be The Man.”

Francisco had surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow in December and was shutdown early in camp after experiencing discomfort.

Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer

I’m really eager to see Parnell in this role. It’s time for him to graduate from set-up man and he’s going to get the chance. He strikes me as a guy capable of doing this, but I still expect he’ll balance stretches of dominance with letting up the occasional game-winning hit. It’s the nature of the position these days for most teams, and there isn’t much from Parnell’s past to suggest he’ll suddenly transform in to an elite closer. But, who knows… and that’s really the point. He’s 28 years old, he’s been in the league for a while now (logging more than 200 innings), and it’s time to see what he can really do…

To see Mike Baron’s Q&A with Parnell last month, during which they talk about him being the team’s closer in 2013, click here.