Padres closer Heath Bell won Major League Baseball’s Delivery Man of the Year Award in 2010 with a shiny 1.93 ERA and 47 saves in 50 chances.
His winter has not gone as smoothly.
First he was named in several different trade scenarios, then he came down with typhoid fever while vacationing in the islands of the south Pacific Ocean.
According to Corey Brock of MLB.com, Bell caught the bug while staying on the Fijian island of Tavarua. It didn’t hit him until a few days later, when he was in Hawaii and hoping to renew his marital vows with his wife Nicole.
Instead of enjoying the sun and beautiful beaches of Maui, Bell spent most of his time in an emergency room as doctors fought a battle against bacteria in his bloodstream.
All is well now.
Typhoid fever varies from serious to mild and Bell escaped without any long-term effects. He was spotted at the Padres’ Holiday Caravan in good health and good spirits, and he should be back to 100 percent health by the opening of spring training.
Athletics southpaw Sean Manaea delivered his first career no-hitter against the Red Sox in a decisive 3-0 victory on Saturday night. Any thought of a perfect game was banished in the first at-bat, when Mookie Betts drew a leadoff six-pitch walk to open the first inning. From there, Manaea was nearly flawless, holding the Sox to four total baserunners and striking out 10 of 30 batters faced — a career record.
Manaea was gifted a three-run lead thanks to RBI doubles from Jed Lowrie and Stephen Piscotty and Marcus Semien‘s solo shot off of Chris Sale in the fifth inning. While the Red Sox managed to draw two walks off of Manaea, they didn’t come anywhere close to plating a run. Andrew Benintendi tried to break up the no-no in the sixth inning with an infield hit down the first base line, but strayed out of bounds and later saw his hit reversed on a call of batter interference.
Entering the ninth inning, the 26-year-old lefty was sitting at just 95 pitches through eight frames of no-hit ball. He quickly deposed Blake Swihart and Mookie Betts with a groundout and fly out, then walked Benintendi on seven pitches. Any threat the Red Sox might have posed was soon eliminated, however, as Hanley Ramirez ground into a force out to complete the no-hitter.
Manaea is the first A’s pitcher to toss a no-no since Dallas Braden’s perfect game against the Rays eight years ago. The last time the Red Sox were on the losing end of a no-hitter was also against an AL West rival, when the Mariners’ Chris Bosio clinched a 2-0 no-no on April 22, 1993. Manaea’s feat is even more outstanding given how dominant the Red Sox have looked this season: prior to Saturday’s defeat, they boasted a 17-2 record and had yet to be shut out during the regular season.