Heath Bell has been a disappointment for the Tampa Bay Rays to say the least.
After being acquired in a three-team trade in the offseason, the veteran Bell has posted a 7.27 ERA in 17.1 innings with 12 Ks and 8 BBs.
Not what you’re looking for from a reliever you are paying $5.5 million.
In dire need of better bullpen work, the Rays have elected to move on from the floundering Bell, designating the reliever for assignment.
The Rays have called up right handed pitcher Nate Karns to take Bell’s place on the roster. Karns was 0-1 with Washington last year with a 7.50 ERA in 12 innings.
Yeah, he’s a better option than Bell at this point.
Tampa now has ten days to work out a trade for Bell, but the chances are pretty slim that they will be able to move him.
At one time Bell was one of the best late relievers in the business, racking up 40+ saves per year each season from 2009 to 2011 while a member of the Padres.
But after 2011 Bell fell off that closer cliff. Tampa was the 36-year-old’s third team in three years. That’s never a good sign. Even going to the Rod Beck-like facial hair couldn’t save him.
At least the Rays can feel good about getting Ryan Hanigan in the same trade that brought them Bell.