Heath Bell’s good at what he does and he’d like some job security. The Padres closer, who received MLB's Delivery Man of the Year award this week, told Dan Hayes of the North County Times that he’d like a multi-year deal from the Padres this offseason.
"Three years is perfect," Bell said. "I don't expect more because I'm an older guy."
Bell, who earned $4MM this year, hits free agency after next season. The subject of near-constant trade rumors, Bell says he’s “optimistic” that Padres GM Jed Hoyer will hold onto him. The Padres can keep Bell for 2011 even if they don't offer him an extension.
If the Padres decide to part with the big 33-year-old, they’d likely find a number of suitors. Bell posted a 1.93 ERA with 47 saves last year and made the All-Star team for the second consecutive season. Armed with a mid-90s fastball and a curve, Bell posted 11.1 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9 last year, anchoring the Padres’ strong ‘pen.