The Red Sox traded Jed Lowrie and Kyle Weiland to the Houston Astros for one-time Yankee prospect Mark Melancon.
Houston used Melancon as a closer for most of 2011, and he had 20 saves, and 2.78 ERA in 74 1/3 innings.
I would guess the Red Sox will use him as either the 8th inning or closer next season.
After last season's debacle in September, I figured Weiland had no future in Boston. And Lowrie not gets a chance to play every day in Houston, if he can ever stay healthy.
And to take Lowrie's place, the Sox signed utility infielder Nick Punto to a two-year deal, at a total of $3 million.