The Blue Jays are interested in Heath Bell for some reason

21 Comments

Pop quiz, hot shot! You’re eleven games back in the AL East with practically no hope whatsoever of contending. The trade deadline is approaching. What do you do? Tell me! What. Do. You. Do?

Well, if you’re the Blue Jays you inquire about the best closer currently available.  At least that’s what Ken Rosenthal says that the Jays are doing, calling on the Padres about Heath Bell.

It makes little sense, though Rosenthal says that they’re looking at him long term rather than just as a rental, and that having him in-house as the season ends would give them a leg up in negotiations.  Maybe — I have no idea how Bell’s bread is buttered and maybe he likes to stay in places where he’s comfy — but it seems odd that they’s want to give up anything of value for him under such risky circumstances.

And even if it were simply fishing for draft pick compensation following an arbitration offer this fall, it strikes me that whatever they’d have to give up for him would largely offset the value of those picks, so why bother?

Astros clinch postseason berth with 11-3 win over Angels

Astros
Getty Images
Leave a comment

No surprise here: The Astros are headed back to the postseason to defend their title following a landslide 11-3 win over the Angels on Friday. This figures to be their third playoff run since 2015, though they have yet to wrap up the AL West with a division title.

First baseman Yuli Gurriel led the charge on Friday, smashing a grand slam in the first inning and tacking on a two-run homer in the second and RBI single in the fifth to help the Astros to a seven-run lead. The Angels eventually returned fire, first with Mike Trout‘s 418-foot homer in the sixth, then with an RBI hit from Francisco Arcia in the seventh, but they couldn’t close the gap in time to overtake the Astros.

On the mound, right-hander Gerrit Cole clinched his 15th win of the year after holding the Angels to seven innings of three-run, 12-strikeout ball. His sixth strikeout of the night — delivered on an 83.1-MPH knuckle curveball to Kaleb Cowart — also marked the 1,000th strikeout of his career to date. He was backed by flawless performances by lefty reliever Tony Sipp and rookie right-hander Dean Deetz, both of whom turned in scoreless innings as the offense barreled toward an 11-3 finish with Jake Marisnick‘s sac bunt and George Springer‘s three-run shot in the eighth.

Despite having qualified for the playoffs, the Astros still carry a magic number of 6 as they look to clinch a third straight division title. They’re currently up against the Athletics, who entered Friday’s contest against the Twins just four games back of first place in the AL West.