Marlins Sign Heath Bell

by Ben Cook on December 1, 2011

The Florida er Miami Marlins have made their first big free agent acquisition of the off-season but it’s not Jose Reyes or Albert Pujols.

ESPN’s Jayson Stark is reporting the Marlins have landed closer Heath Bell.

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Stark is also reporting there’s a vesting option for a 4th year and at $9M per year, the trend of high priced closers continues. Unfortunately for teams searching for a lights out closer, the talent pool is shrinking significantly with Papelbon, Broxton, Nathan and now Bell all signed before the GM Winter meetings.

Ryan Madson is the lone superstar left on the open market and he likely won’t come cheap. The closer is believed to have turned down a four year offer from the Phillies for an average annual value of over $10M.

The run on closers has led several teams such as the Toronto Blue Jays to explore the possibility of trading for a closer such as the Royals Joakim Soria.

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