If you haven't been following the San Diego Padres this season (I certainly hope you have a good excuse!), then you might not be up-to-date on their closer situation. Trevor Hoffman (cue "Hell's Bells"), who had been the man in San Diego since the early 90's, was let go in the off season after the Padres withdrew a one-year deal (cue sad "Hell's Bells"), and is currently trying to come back from an injury with the Milwaukee Brewers.
His replacement in San Diego is Heath Bell, a 31-year old Californian who is perhaps best-known for losing 25 pounds this off season ... by playing Wii Fit with his kids. This year, his first as a closer, Bell is 4-for-4 in save opportunities and hasn't allowed a single run. This newfound success, and the slimmer physique, has seemingly instilled a new, stronger sense of self-confidence (or maybe he's just trying to endear himself to sports bloggers), because yesterday Bell ripped into ESPN. Via Rumors and Rants:
“I saw John Kruk on “Baseball Tonight” and he said, ‘They’re playing really well, but I don’t believe in them,’” Bell said before Monday’s game. “And I saw ESPN’s promo for tonight’s game. They mention the Mets are opening Citi Field, they mentioned the starting time, but nowhere did they mention the Padres. That gave me the (expletive).”I think I'm gonna like this Heath Bell guy. Now, can someone please ask him his thoughts on the Steve Phillips mock-press conferences.
Bell was just getting warmed up in his pregame commentary.
“I truly believe ESPN only cares about promoting the Red Sox and Yankees and Mets - and nobody else,” said the closer, a former Met. “That’s why I like the MLB Network, because they promote everybody. I’m really turned off by ESPN and ‘Baseball Tonight.’ When Jake Peavy threw 8 1/3 innings on Saturday, they showed one pitch in the third inning and that was it. It’s all about the Red Sox, Yankees and Mets.”
Heath Bell Does Not Care For Your Coverage, ESPN - Rumors and Rants