The Orioles might turn to a former Boston Red Sox pitcher to fill their closer vacancy.

Baltimore is “close” to a deal with Craig Kimbrel, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal on Wednesday. The New York Post’s Joel Sherman on Tuesday first reported contact between the sides.

Félix Bautista underwent Tommy John surgery and will miss the 2024 Major League Baseball season. Kimbrel would either be the closer or setup man for Yennier Cano.

Kimbrel reached 400 saves when he pitched with the Philadelphia Phillies last season, but the right-hander’s struggles in the postseason continued during the National League Championship Series.

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The former Red Sox pitcher posted a career-high 3.2 WAR in 2017, per FanGraphs. His three-year run with the Red Sox arguably made him one of the best relievers in franchise history. But the 35-year-old struggled since he left Boston in 2018.

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But the Orioles hope a return to the American League will help get Kimbrel back on track and keep them among the top contenders after they won the AL East last season.

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