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Marlins Targeting Heath Bell


                  The Marlins have been in discussions with the San Diego Padres for closer Heath Bell, but the cost to obtain him might be too steep. According to a FoxSports report, the Padres are demanding that a young pitcher -- Sean West or Andrew Miller, for example -- be included in a trade package.for the reliever.

                  It's hard to see the Marlins parting with either one considering their minor-league pitching depth isn't what it used to be. For that matter, it's interesting that the Marlins are focusing on a reliever, what with the uncertainty surrounding their starting staff. At the moment, Rick VandenHurk (career record 6-7, 6.50) is their fourth starter and they don't have anyone confirmed as their fifth.Heath

                  Bell would certainly provide the Marlins with a seasoned back-end reliever. He has 25 saves this season, a 2.01 ERA and is averaging 10.7 strikeouts per nine innings. He is also affordable, making $1.255 million in his first year of arbitration, and would fit within the Marlins' payroll parameters next season.

                  But the Marlins aren't the only club looking at Bell. There are said to be as many as 10 to 15 teams asking about him. And I'm not so certain, considering their need to address the rotation, that Bell is the only player on the Marlins' radar heading into Friday's 4 p.m. trade deadline.

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