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The Cubs are "kicking the tires" on Heath Bell

Jan 10, 2010, 4:30 PM EDT

Whatever that means. It’s Phil Rogers’ phrase. Maybe they’re talking to the Padres about him, maybe they’re just talking about talking.

Either way, if the Cubs snagged Bell off the Padres, they’d go into their second straight season with someone who will likely push Carlos Marmol into a setup roll.  Granted, Bell (42 saves; 79Ks in 69 IP, 2.71 ERA) is a hell of a lot better than Kevin Gregg was, but Marmol didn’t take well to being the setup man last season, hitting guys and walking guys like crazy until Gregg got demoted and Marmol turned his season around. There were suggestions that he was erratic because his ego was bruised over losing a closer’s job he thought was his. Could it happen again if they brought in Gregg?

Ultimately, though, I’d rather have as many good arms as I could find and let Piniella figure it all out as opposed to anointing someone closer and calling it a day.

  1. Josh - Jan 10, 2010 at 6:17 PM

    Those who do not learn from the past are doomed to be Cubs fans. Or Cubs management.

  2. Old Gator - Jan 10, 2010 at 10:54 PM

    Kevin Gregg! No sooner are those words out than a vast image out of spiritus ludens troubles my sight: somewhere in the shadows of the bullpen a shape with beerbarrel belly and the head of an Easter Island statue, a gaze as blank and clueless as a dittohead, is moving its slow thighs while all around it reel the expectations of the starving bleacher bums. The darkness drops again….

  3. thisboyspunout - Jan 11, 2010 at 12:36 AM

    I’ll take him, no questions asked.

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