Padres closer Heath Bell was awarded MLB’s Delivery Man of the Year Award earlier this week for posting a 1.93 ERA and converting 47 of 50 save opportunities during the regular season.
And now he’s looking to cash in, according to Dan Hayes of the North County Times.
“Three years is perfect,” Bell said Thursday when asked about possible negotiations toward a contract extension. “I don’t expect more because I’m an older guy.”
That last part is nice and all, but a three-year deal might be a reach. Bell earned $4 million in 2010 via salary arbitration and could be bumped to a salary as high as $7 million for 2011. Extend that over the next three seasons and Bell is essentially asking for a three-year contract worth more than $20 million. That’s big-time money to pay a closer and the Padres have a rather small operating budget.
Bell is one of the best ninth-inning men in the game — there’s little doubt about that — but he may have to move elsewhere after 2011 in order to cash in. Look for his name to come up in trade talks this winter and again next summer.
According to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman, free agent reliever Joba Chamberlain has a deal with the Brewers. No confirmation or terms of the contract have been confirmed by the team yet.
Chamberlain, 31, had a promising resurgence in the Indians’ bullpen during 2016. He shaved his ERA down to a modest 2.25 mark over 20 innings with Cleveland, paired with an 8.1 SO/9 and less-than-stellar 5.0 BB/9 rate. Over a decade in the major leagues, the right-hander holds a career 3.81 ERA, 8.8 SO/9 and 3.7 BB/9 rate.
The veteran righty was released by the Indians in July after refusing re-assignment. He’s expected to compete for a major league role this spring.
After letting rumors of the deal percolate for the last week, the Athletics officially announced their two-year, $11 million contract with right-hander Santiago Casilla on Friday (and threw a little bit of shade at the Giants, too). As previously reported, the contract includes an extra $3 million in performance bonuses.
Casilla, 36, got his major league start with Oakland back in 2004, racking up a 5.11 ERA and four saves over six seasons in the A’s bullpen. After picking up a minor league deal with the Giants in 2010, the righty flitted in and out of the closing role with varying degrees of success. Notwithstanding a slight downturn in his production rate during the 2016 season, he earned 123 saves and a 2.42 ERA during the past seven years in San Francisco. Securing another closing role might be a little tougher across the Bay, however, with a bullpen that includes fellow closers Ryan Madson, Ryan Dull and Sean Doolittle.