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Phillies the top suitors for Padres’ Heath Bell, Mike Adams

Jul 25, 2011, 6:36 PM EDT

Heath Bell Reuters

The New York Post’s Joel Sherman reports that while the Phillies have been aggressive in pursuing Heath Bell and Mike Adams, the Padres are surprised there hasn’t been more interest from contenders like the Yankees, Reds and Cardinals.

Bell went on ESPN Radio on Sunday and predicted that he’d be traded to the Cardinals, Phillies or Rangers.  ESPN.com’s Jim Bowden said later that Bell was the Rangers’ No. 1 trade target.

Since they’re factoring in the cost of missing out on two compensation picks in next year’s draft, the Padres have put a heavy price on Bell’s head.  A team isn’t just buying two-plus months of Bell; it’s also getting two possible top-40 picks if he leaves as a free agent.

For that reason, there’s a growing suspicion the Padres might keep Bell and trade Adams instead.  Adams could bring a bigger haul since he costs less and he’s under control for 2012.  He’s also arguably the superior pitcher; Adams has a 1.20 ERA this year and a 1.33 ERA in 148 2/3 innings since the beginning of 2009.  Bell is at 2.45 this season and 2.35 in 180 innings over the last three seasons.

The Padres will almost certainly deal one of the two before Sunday’s deadline.  Don’t be too surprised if Bell ends up staying and Adams makes his way to Philadelphia or Texas.

  1. proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2011 at 6:56 PM

    The Jays need a closer, but probably not Bell. Do not be surprised if they are in the mix for Adams. I understand that he has applied for his passport.

    • prionogenic - Jul 25, 2011 at 7:01 PM

      Why would the Jays, 9.5 behind the Yanks and BoSox be buyers at the trade deadline? They are playing .500 ball in the toughest division in baseball right now, a close isn’t going to take them to the playoffs

      • sknut - Jul 25, 2011 at 7:05 PM

        Draft Picks thats why, unless they think they have a good chance to re-sign him.

      • jamie54 - Jul 25, 2011 at 7:08 PM

        Agreed, makes no sense at all. Behind the Rays also. And who would they give in exchange since it would have to be quite a haul? No, can’t see the Jays being players even if they do need a closer they can control for another year. You don’t make those trades at a July 31 deadline, those are done over the winter.

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2011 at 7:25 PM

        Adams is under control until 2012. They Jays need a closer not a rental player like Bell

      • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 10:07 PM

        @sknut except the Padres Org knows this and will ask for similar prospects. So what’s better, prospects you have know that are more known factors or two picks for future prospects that are unknown, tough call to make.

      • derpdederpdederp - Jul 25, 2011 at 11:35 PM

        as much as I would like to see the Jays pick up a solid closer there is no chance they are in the mix for Bell or Adams. the Padres would likely want Brett Lawrie in that package and AA will be having none of that

      • kellyb9 - Jul 26, 2011 at 9:56 AM

        By the toughest division in baseball, you mean the NL East, right? Last I recall none of those teams you mentioned play in the NL…. strange.

  2. mojosmagic - Jul 25, 2011 at 7:53 PM

    The Phils need a right handed power bat not another pitcher.

    • Utley's Hair - Jul 25, 2011 at 8:31 PM

      Yes, they probably do—I go back and forth on that with every offensive explosion.

      But let’s delay judgment on the pitcher until “Lights Out” Lidge gets another outing or two under his belt.

    • jeffhink - Jul 25, 2011 at 8:32 PM

      Couldn’t agree more. The bullpen is getting stronger with Lidge back. Kendrick will be back in the pen soon with Oswalt returning and Herndon will be back in AAA. The Phils offense has been on fire of late but everyone knows they can’t go all the way without a better RH bat in that lineup.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:18 PM

        That can absolutely win the World Series without adding a right handed bat.

    • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:11 PM

      Carpenter… Herndon… Carpenter… Herndon… Which one to toss to AAA?

      • Utley's Hair - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:16 PM

        As I said above, let’s delay that decision until Lidge gets another game or two under his belt.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:19 PM

        Neither, I think Perez goes down when Oswalt comes off the DL.

      • Utley's Hair - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:21 PM

        Sorry, Dr. I’m going to hold the Baez thing over you. I see Herndon going down before Perez. I like the youngster—though he’s what, 33?—and his incredibly awkward delivery.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:30 PM

        Yeah, I was completely and utterly wrong about Baez. Glad I was wrong though. Maybe Perez stays because he is a lefty….I like Herndon though. I think he has a good future in the Phillies bullpen.

      • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 10:08 PM

        Perez won’t go down because he’s the only other Lefty. And Lidge has $12 MM reasons he’ll be in the BP regardless of his actual performance. The only way he’s out of the roster is an injury. Thus it will be Carpenter or Herndon when Oswalt is back.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 25, 2011 at 10:26 PM

        I don’t think they should keep Perez just because he is a lefty. The guy is not good. His numbers for the Iron Pigs weren’t great and he hasn’t been a good ML pitcher when given the opportunity. He had that nice inning, but soon teams will realize that if I just stand there, he will walk me. Charlie clearly doesn’t trust him and has way more faith in Herndon compared to Perez.

      • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 11:06 PM

        That’s rather harsh, he’s had 6 appearances, 5 really good ones and just 1 meltdown. He’ll have to screw up more regardless before they send him back down.

      • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 11:14 PM

        Correction, 4 good ones, 1 avg, 1 meltdown. He’s not an awesome pitcher but he can be good for an inning of middle relief or situational lefties.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jul 26, 2011 at 12:46 AM

        No way. He is a career minor leaguer for a reason. His numbers with the Iron Pigs were not impressive in the least either. His mechanics are so terrible that it is impossible to replicate a delivery. I wouldn’t put him into a game unless the Phils were down big. Rather keep Herndon… at least he can go multiple innings and isn’t as bad as some make him out to be.

      • Jonny 5 - Jul 26, 2011 at 8:30 AM

        If I’m the Phillies I absolutely keep Herndon up, or package him in a trade for another guy who can give you multiple innings. The guy is making the minimum, and regardless of his era, and some of the things we’ve seen from him lately he projects as better than he is. When the Phills are blown out, or vice versa, you put a guy like this in to give you 3 innings, and hope he doesn’t give up more than a run, which when you look at it, is about what he’s done. Carpenter and Perez look awfully shaky out there to me, Herndon on the other hand can pitch through problems. Perez has serious control issues and will walk a ton of major league players. I know teams are looking at closers, and I trade Lidge while covering his salary if at all possible. I think he was written off anyway.

  3. paul621 - Jul 25, 2011 at 8:42 PM

    Canadian: Adams applied for his passport in case he goes to a team that plays the Jays; highly doubt he’s getting traded there.

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2011 at 8:46 PM

      A. A. surprises people with the trades he pulls off that nobody saw coming.

      • FC - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:14 PM

        Jays need more reliable rotation, the bullpen needs fixing but I’d try adding pieces to the rotation. Jo-Jo isn’t a long term solution…

        And paul is right, Adams was quoted as saying he applied in case he gets traded to the American league and finds himself having to travel to Toronto to play against the Blue Jays….

      • proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2011 at 9:30 PM

        How did you know that my name is Paul? Jo Jo is gone. There are 4 potential replacements in the system.

  4. evanwins - Jul 26, 2011 at 12:26 AM

    I think that this may be Amaro’s surprise moves: two medium moves. Adams and Upton is my call/guess.

    Lidge looked good today, at least with his slider. His fastball should come back with time. Adding him to the bullpen is kind of like a trade. He definitely improved the club with Baez being optioned. It’s been a long time since he has been this healthy (2008, and you saw how good he was then). I would like to see him succeed.

    And I am leaning more and more toward Upton. I like his athleticism and I think he could be a great addition to this club. I also think he can be had for cheaper than the other good options.

    • dcbassguy - Jul 26, 2011 at 11:52 AM

      I’d take Adams and Upton in a heartbeat. Those would both be solid moves. I’m in the minority that still thinks Upton can live up to his potential. He’s got a very high talent level, and I think being in Philly with the veteran players, he’d be able to reach his ceiling as a player. As far as Adams goes, I think he’s better than Bell, and would be alright with a non-closer role if Lidge gets back on track. I’m not sure you can tell Bell that he’s not the closer. (If it comes to that)

  5. trevorb06 - Jul 26, 2011 at 10:40 AM

    Because Bell has the save stat filled the Twin’s will send Revere, Hicks and Gibson for him. If we could send Wilson Ramos again, we would include him too!

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