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Papelbon not medically cleared to close games

Updated: February 6, 2007, 5:45 PM ET
Associated Press

BOSTON -- Terry Francona doesn't expect Jonathan Papelbon to move back into the bullpen, even though it would make the Boston manager's life easier.

"If I had my druthers, he would be our closer," Francona said Tuesday, a day before heading to Florida to get an early start on spring training. "It's not happening. We have to respect the medical people's advice."

Papelbon was thrust into the closer's role as a rookie in 2006 when Keith Foulke struggled to recover from ...

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