Originally written on MarlinsBaseball.com  |  Last updated 10/2/12

The Heath Bell signing has been a disaster of monumental proportions, that is something that nobody can deny.  It would look like a bad signing even on a smaller deal but when you consider the years and dollars involved — it becomes one of the worst contracts in Marlins’ history.   The easy thing would be to trade Bell, pay a bunch of the money he’s owed and forget it ever happened.    Should the Marlins do that though?  The answer to that may not be as simple as many think.

In baseball, relief pitchers are volatile.  One year, some will dominate the league and then the next — they are well, Heath Bell.   Last season Bell put up very good numbers in San Diego, something that had become the norm for his career over the past few seasons.  Then came this season’s fall from grace for Bell, an epic change in ability that has continued throughout the season.   A drop in velocity, and an inability to show consistent control were factors in the downfall of Bell.  He lost the closers job and never regained it due in part to Steve Cishek’s exceptional work.    There was a point where Bell put it together for a little while but it was not long lasting enough for him to recapture the job he was signed to do.

Besides his on field performance, Bell has made headlines for his off the field comments about his manager and his teammates.  Too often, Bell has pointed the finger at others while deflecting blame off himself.  This has led to him seemingly falling out of favor in the clubhouse as his teammates sided with manager Ozzie Guillen when the two went toe-to-toe in the media.

If the Marlins trade Bell and it is extremely likely that they will try to do so — they will have to send a considerable amount of money along the way with him.  Bell is owed $18 million over the next two years and coming off 2012, there are not many teams in baseball who would be interested in picking up any significant percentage of the tab.   Return value in a trade would be low with a team sending a low level prospect most likely. Since relief pitchers are known to sometimes find “it” after a down year, it may be in the Marlins’ best interest to hold onto Bell in hopes he can turn it around.  If they have to pay him anyway, why not see what he can do?  If he falters again, they can always re-visit a trade.   The off the field issues can be worrisome but with a possible switch at manager, some of those issues may work themselves out inadvertently.

It’s clear that Cishek should be the closer to start 2013, he earned that right and it would be wrong to make him compete for the job in Spring Training.   It’s likely Bell can’t be worse than he was in 2012 so maybe the Marlins should see if he can be better?

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Tim Duncan to help Spurs pitch LaMarcus Aldridge

Report: Knicks gave up on signing Marc Gasol 'long ago'

Kings terminate Mike Richards' contract due to 'breach'

Report: Nets believe they can trade Deron Williams

Mickelson likely committed no crime even if he gambled

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Dwyane Wade to decline option, become a free agent

Darren McFadden: I feel like a rookie again

Report: Mavericks a favorite to land DeAndre Jordan

Report: Kevin Love likely to re-sign with Cavaliers

Bo Ryan announces he'll coach Wisconsin one more season

Jadeveon Clowney must balance expectations in recovery

World Cup semifinals preview: US-Japan, Germany-England

Former FSU mascot killed in argument over gumbo recipe

Royals slipping in All-Star Game voting, lose two more starters

Fred Smoot: I played with gay players, 'everyone knew'

Bobby Portis brings donuts for media at press conference

John Calipari shares his thoughts on Confederate flag

Steve Weatherford, Jason Kelce get into Twitter beef

Larry Nance Jr. apologized to 'Mr. Bryant' for rapist tweet

J.J. Watt 'tackles' stage crasher at Zac Brown Band show

Jimmy Butler reportedly wants to leave Bulls, sign with Lakers

Selecting the 2015 National League All-Stars

Taking a look at the Philadelphia Sixers' latest horde

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Mickelson linked to money laundering?

Reminiscing on 'Love & Basketball' 15 years later

Selecting the 2015 NL All-Stars

The Sixers' latest horde

Projected landing spots for NBA's top free agents

MLB changes format for Home Run Derby

Revis to work out with Patriots DBs

Peterson: I'm still NFL's best RB

Kobe gives great quote on friendship

Winners, losers and steals of the NHL Draft

Carmelo calls Porzingis a 'steal'

WATCH: J.J. Watt scores hockey goal

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.