"Would I like to be the closer? Sure," said Stanton, who had a career-high 27 saves in 1993 with the Braves. "The bottom line is I want to pitch. I come to camp and I go into the regular season with the idea that I'm coming into the ballpark pitching that day. That's always been my approach. That will always be my approach. I don't like to sit and watch games."Among the younger pitchers, Coffey, 26, had eight saves last season. He excelled in a setup spot and led the Reds with 81 appearances. The right-hander already said over the winter he wanted another crack at the closing job. At 23 years old, Bray is the youngest pitcher on the list of candidates. He had two saves for Cincinnati last season after coming over from Washington in a July trade. "If the opportunity arose, I would definitely try to make the most of it," Bray said. "Right now, it's so far in the back of my mind. I'm just trying to prepare for the season and concentrate on breaking camp with the team." Weathers emerged from an closer-by-committee system early last season before losing the job to Coffey, who struggled and lost the job when Guardado was acquired. Holding leads into the ninth inning often proved difficult for a Reds bullpen in constant flux, especially in the first half. Cincinnati's bullpen ended up ranked 12th in the Natinonal League with 36 saves. "If you are going to go with a bullpen-by-committee ... you need three or four guys in the bullpen that can close," Stanton said. "Do we have that? Yeah, we have experience down there. We'll have to see how it comes about. It might be that situation or somebody steps forward and takes the job. "Back in Atlanta, when we had bullpen-by-committee for the most part, it can be successful. We went to the World Series a couple of times. I don't think the bullpen was one of the weaknesses of the team. It's not easy. You have to have multiple guys that can go out there on any given night." Can one reliever emerge from the pack and take the ninth inning for himself until Guardado returns? We won't know until games start in March, but if no one claims the job, Narron knows he has options. "One thing about it is they've all pitched in every situation possible out of the bullpen," Narron said. "We've got a couple of young guys in Coffey and Bray and veterans -- Stanton, Weathers and Cormier. You can't get a lot more experience than they've got."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.