Blog Entry

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

Posted on: July 28, 2011 4:19 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2011 7:59 pm
What we know right now is that the Rangers and Padres have spent significant time on the telephone over the past 24 hours with Texas taking a hard run at acquiring closer Heath Bell.

But while talks have been significant, substantive, pick your word, the potential deal continued to just sit there Thursday while the Rangers balked at the Padres' asking price, sources with knowledge of the talks told

The Padres, according to sources, are asking a three-player return for Bell, a price Texas is not eager to pay. Whether Texas' pause could open the door for St. Louis, the Los Angeles Angels or another suitor to move in is unclear.

"It's going to happen," Bell said of a trade after he collected his 30th save of the season in San Diego's 4-3 win over Arizona. "It will probably be down to the wire."

Bell thinks he'll end up in Texas. The Rangers remain very interested, according to sources, and talks are said to be ongoing -- though, as of early afternoon Thursday in San Diego, they were not hot.

San Diego had a scout watching Texas pitching prospect Robbie Erlin at Double-A Frisco the other night. Erlin, Texas' third-round pick in the 2009 draft, is 5-2 with a 4.32 ERA in 10 starts this season, with 61 strikeouts in 66 2/3 innings.

The Rangers and Padres have had "good talks" over the past 24 hours, one source said, though Thursday's cooling is an indication that if there is to be a deal reached, it likely will not happen before Friday. Rangers general manager Jon Daniels is said to be traveling with the Rangers to Toronto for this weekend's series and further trade deadline discussions.

Texas has settled on bullpen help as its top priority, and manager Ron Washington lately has become disenchanted with closer Neftali Feliz, saying publicly the other day that he wants to see "a little more fire" from the closer.

"I just don't see the urgency," Washington said. "I'm not saying it's not there, but he's not exuding urgency."

Bell, tied for third in the NL with 29 saves and a three-time All-Star, is full of energy, and his presence -- or that of another reliever like him -- probably would jack up Feliz a little bit.

The Rangers are said to be honed in on Bell, and indications are that they do not believe the Padres are going to trade set-up man Mike Adams.

One Padres source said the other day that the club believes Bell would sign a discounted multi-year deal in San Diego as a free agent this winter and, as such, suggested the club could keep him this summer.

"That's the key right there," Bell said after Thursday's game. "Honestly, with everything that's happened, I wouldn't rule out anything. I said I'd take a discount, and I want to stay here. Everyone knows that."

Still, it's hard to see the Padres not dealing him and getting something in return, even if talks between the closer and the team would lead toward belief that they could reunite this winter.

Padres GM Jed Hoyer was not available at Thursday afternoon's Arizona-San Diego game. But on Wednesday, he told AM1090, the Padres' flagship radio, "I think we should [trade]. We don't have the talent base here that we need two have in order to be successful."

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Since: Jun 15, 2009
Posted on: July 30, 2011 12:04 pm

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

The Rangers have a ton of talent in the minors. If the main prospect in this deal is Erlin they have to pull the trigger. There off. and starting pitching have been great. The bullpen is the key to them making it past Boston or NY. I could understand the hesitation if the Pads wanted there top two minor league arms or the stud outfielder from the Dominican Rep. but Erlin is hardly to be missed. Dont waste your present chance to win on a player that MIGHT become decent.


Since: May 19, 2009
Posted on: July 29, 2011 4:23 pm

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

Rangers have one of the top closers?  Have you seen Feliz pitch lately.  Last year it was shocking to see him give up a game.  Its shocking this year if he gets a strikeout or doesnt get down in a count.  He has lost it somehow.  Rangers have the worst ERA in the AL or close to it.  Oliver one of hte set up men is like 3-8 or something. 
I dont know if Feliz is hurt or what but hes not the same pitcher he was last year.

Since: Jul 28, 2011
Posted on: July 28, 2011 5:22 pm

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

I think it's fairly simple. They have a need for a setup man, and possibly at closer for next season if Feliz is to move into the rotation. Getting Bell accomplishes both. Beltran was seen as an upgrade to Chavez/Gentry, and would rotate with Hamilton to keep wear down on both. Trading for Felix isn't realistic, especially to a division rival. The gave up Lee because they knew he wouldn't re-sign, Felix is locked in for years. So if you step back for a second and look at it with those details, it's easier to follow the logic.

Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: July 28, 2011 5:11 pm

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

reports were that a deal with St.Louis was centered around Colby Rasmus.
with him traded that deal is gone.

Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: July 28, 2011 5:02 pm

Bell talks continue, Rangers balk at high price

It is really hard for me to understand the thinking of some teams. The Rangers have one of the top closers in baseball, but are willing to give up so much for Bell. This will cause one of the two pitchers to become the setup man in the bullpen. Perhaps the Rangers are thinking way ahead. If any team needs Bell, it has to be the Cardinals. With Weeks of the Brewers hurt, the division is wide open. I do not see the Pirates staying in the running till the end. They are not ready yet. Texas was interested in Beltran at one time, but why? They have no need at all for him. They have a really potent lineup as is. They should go talk to Seattle about the King if they really want to win. A legitimate number 1 in the rotation would make the Rangers a team to really be reckoned with. Just my opinion.

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