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The Heath Bell File

    MILWAUKEE -- Heath Bell was charged with his fifth blown save -- and what a doozy it was -- in yesterday's epic 13-12 loss to the Brewers. There was the comeback, the Bell meltdown, and finally Ozzie Guillen's cherry-on-top clubhouse rant to close out a wild one at Miller Park.

     The loss was the fourth one in recent weeks -- and second in as many days -- in which the Marlins appeared to have a relatively solid handle on the outcome, only for it to all slip away somehow (Boston at Fenway, the Cardinals' 9th-inning comeback in Miami and Monday's defeat after building a 5-2 lead on Zack Greinke).

     Bell has had a hand in two of those, but his failures so far this season (today's 81st game takes us to the exact halfway point) extend far beyond his "blown saves." Check out the diary of his downfalls:

    -- April 14 vs. Houston -- Marlins are leading 4-1 in the 9th, but Bell gives up four runs in a 5-4 loss. Blown Save.

    -- April 26 at New York -- Marlins are leading 2-1 in the 9th, but Bell gives up two runs in a 3-2 loss. Blown Save.

    -- May 2 at San Francisco -- Marlins are leading 2-0 in the 9th, but Bell is lifted for Steve Cishek after the Giants score twice to tie it and send game to extra innings. Marlins won 3-2 in the 10th. Not a blown save since Cishek inherited the save situation from Bell.

    -- May 4 at San Diego -- Marlins are leading 8-7 in the 9th, but Bell gives up the tying run. Marlins eventually win 9-8 in the 12th. Blown Save.

    -- May 13 vs. New York Mets -- Marlins are tied 2-2 with Mets in the 9th, but Bell gives up two runs as Mets take the lead. Marlins score six in the bottom of the 9th to pull out victory. Bell, as the pitcher of record, is credited with the win.

    -- May 25 vs. San Francisco -- Marlins take a 7-4 lead into the 9th. But after Giants rally for two runs to trim the lead, Bell is lifted and Cishek is brought in to preserve a 7-6 win.

    -- May 26 vs. San Francisco -- Marins take a 5-2 lead into the 9th. But Bell is lifted for the second straight night when he gives up a run. Choate brought in to preserve 5-3 win.

    -- June 25 vs. St. Louis -- Marlins lead 6-2 in the 9th. But Bell gives up four runs and Cardinals win 8-7 in the 10th. Not a blown save since Bell did not enter in a save situation.

    -- July 3 at Milwaukee -- After overcoming a 9-2 deficit and taking an 12-11 lead in the 10th, Bell gives up a two-run homer to Aramis Ramirez and Marlins lose 13-12. Blown Save.

Comments

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ctw

This is pathetic the front office has to open their eyes... Plus you're not even including the games where bell comes in the game scoreless or the games he blows when the fish have a 4+ run lead

Scott Pose

Clark, Thank You!!! That is all most of us want. We want this described in graphic detail for his destruction of this season. You did it the pefect way--you listed his failures. It's so telling that after half a season we have a vast selection to choose from for our "favorite" collapse. Even if you had a mediocre guy taking his place and in spite of the team struggles in other areas---Just a MEDIOCRE closer and the Marlins are about 4 games out. Do the numbers now--IF the Nats only go 40-44 over last 84 they win 86. To win 86 games the Marlins must go 48-34. For you math majors that is 14 games over .500. Over the first half of the season only the Nats in entire NL have come CLOSE to 14 games over. So the division is basically gone and after a half a season the Marlins are left to fight for the Wild Card. Good Luck and Good Night.

To Hell With David Samson

But, hey, we've got naked women in the pool. That's all that matters, right? To hell with the Marlins and the Dolphins. We ought to hold a revolution and force both teams out of the area. Let them poison another part of the country. We have been poisoned enough.

laurelbowie

Saw a fantasy blog the other day suggesting the term "reliable closer" has become an oxymoron. If you look around both leagues, you gotta admit there aren't many.
Everybody but Spitballer is going to think I'm nuts, but my guess is, there are teams out there who would grab Bell if were offered, maybe as part of a package deal to get the Fish a hitter. One look at today's lineup without Stanton will show just how anemic the Marlins offense really is, despite yesterday's 12 runs.

laurelbowie

And now one of our friends wants to get rid of the naked women in the pool. Man, has it really gotten that bad?

Stan M

Clark, Here is a second thank you. It wouldn't hurt to also question Ozzie's moves when he is being outmanaged. This is happening too often. I'd like to ask once again. Can a team fudge the attendance figures? It doesn't make sense because, if I remember correctly, the visitors get a cut of each sold ticket. But looking at the empty seats, it's very hard to believe their figures. Have you heard if the FO is upset with attendance to date.

Bob

HEATH BELL AAA
HEATH BELL AAA
HEATH BELL AAA

Stan M

LB, I too must very respectfully tell you that you are nuts. In my opinion, they couldn't give him away unless they ate his salary. Think of this. If we had a very competent closer, we would probably be in 2nd place. Many are guilty of glaring ineptness, but that one player has, in truth, ruined our year.

Bob

If Heath Bell had been able to convert all those saves, you know like his contract suggests he can, the Marlins would be a half game behind the Mets and 4 games behind the Nats. Actually, 2 of those games were against the Mets, so the Marlins would be in sole possession of 2nd. The difference between close 2nd and distant 4th is Heath Bell.

I can't wait for JC Oviedo to come back.

laurelbowie

Is anybody opposed to giving a Heath Bell trade a shot? Or should we just keep running him out there?

laurelbowie

Stan M,
As you probably recall, in the not-so-distant past, teams used to announce both paid attendance and gate attendance. MLB apparently decided that shed too much light on the number of no-shows and made baseball look bad.
Also, just as a reminder, it's not gentlemanly to call another man nuts. I believe "challenged" or "dimwitted moron" are considered more acceptable these days.

Stan M

LB, you are undoubtedly a challenged AND dimwitted moron. We have known this for several days. For just as a reminder, as you probably recall, in the not too distant past, a knowledgeable gentleman, scholar, and judge of fine liquor ( i.e. a nitwit) called you out. Somehow I can't seem to remember if anyone else was also identified. Flags..., do you remember? It was a terrible day for intellectual prowess. And all because you like LOMo.

Seriously, there can't be that many no shows. It would have to be 5 or 10 thousand and some of those games had a good opponent as we discussed in the past. Yea, I recall paid vs. no shows, but it still seems unrealistic.

Alex

Bell was signed as the cheapest option available. CHEAP is Loria's middle name. He wasn't going to pay Houston Street or Papelbon, not after giving Reyes ONE HUNDRED AND NINE MILLION DOLLARS, so he went for Bell. I was against it IMMEDIATELY and I said so, and for my trouble I was BANNED at a website that shall remain nameless by a guy who shall remain nameless, out of respect for Stan M, LOL.

This is WHY I was against signing Bell: he was 34 years OLD! In three years he would be 37, and his fastball was already losing velocity LAST YEAR; why do you think the Padres didn't want him? What the hell would he be like in 3 years? Plus he is one of those OVERACHIEVER "Cinderella" types, players that succeed against all odds. Those types do not usually SUSTAIN their success. The Lack of athletic talent that made them long shots to begin with, usually does them in after a while. No, I was 100% right about Bell. Although I wish he had proven me WRONG.

laurelbowie

Stan M,
Maybe all those missing fans are out in the pool with the naked girls.
I'm not sure why teams inflate attendance figures either, but they all seem to do it. Maybe it helps them rake in more money from other sources, such as concession contracts, TV rights and stadium naming rights. The good news for Loria and company is that attendance is up, even if not as much as they expected — and now they get to keep all that money themselves rather than paying out a big chunk to the folks at Sun Life.

Stan M

Agreed, Alex. What is ironic is that his velocity seems to have returned. Gun readings of 95 and 96. And he still stinks.

Glags

Leave camera 12 alone!!! They have no fault in any of this.

Glags

Those are hard working ladies.

Stan M

LB, it seems that you also suspect that the numbers are exaggerated. What I don't know is weather or not the visiting team still gets a cut based on attendance. Maybe the policy was changed. If not the home teams would literally be costing themselves money by fudging the numbers. That's where my confusion lies.
Last week we agreed that letting Stanton take part in the home run contest could be problematic. Now it's time to just say "No." We lost Coghlan for an injury that wasn't part of an actual game, and it would be horrific if the same happened to Stanton.

Alex

The velocity might be ok, but there are two huge problems:

1) He can only throw that fastball at 96 MPH UP IN THE Strike zone. He can't throw 96 at the bottom part of the strike zone.

2) As you well know, Stan, velocity without MOVEMENT is no good. Armando Benitez also threw 96 mph. And like Bell, his fastball was STRAIGHT and he got KILLED, LOL!

Alex

Stan, hate to tell you, but Stanton's probably out with a knee injury. His season might even be over. Rest In Peace, Marlins' 2012 Season!

Stan M

I agree, Alex. It's just that everyone said his velocity was down last year, which it was. Now it has returned but with minimal benefit. He still stinks.

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