Reports: O's Closer Sherrill to Dodgers
Baltimore has dealt closer George Sherrill to the Los Angeles Dodgers for prospects Josh Bell (3B, Class AA) and Steve Johnson (P, Class AA).
Sherrill was the Orioles' biggest trade chip and it seems the team may have acquired a third baseman of the future for him. Bell has compiled a .296 average and .364 OBP with 11 home runs and 44 RBI in 334 at-bats this year with the Chattanooga Lookouts of the Southern League. Bell will join 1B/3B Brandon Snyder (currently with Class AAA Norfolk) as the team's top infield prospects. The 22-year-old Bell was a fourth-round selection in the 2005 draft.
Johnson is the son of former Oriole Dave Johnson and has a 9-5 record, 3.61 ERA and 112 strikeouts in 18 starts between two levels of the minors this season. The 21-year-old right-hander was born in Baltimore, drafted by the Dodgers in the 13th round of the 2005 draft and was recently called up to pitch for Chattanooga.
This may be the only move the Orioles make heading up to Friday's trade deadline but Los Angeles is reportedly still somewhere in the running for Toronto Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay. Sherrill will join a Dodgers team that has lost a season-high four in a row but is still comfortably ahead in the NL West with a seven-game lead over San Francisco.
Sherrill will take his 20 saves and 2.40 ERA to a Dodgers bullpen that could use him either as a setup man or as a split closer with Jonathan Broxton.
With Sherrill gone, the question for Baltimore becomes who will step up into the closer role. Jim Johnson seems the likely candidate but he has struggled recently in his setup role. Former closer Chris Ray doesn't yet seem closer-ready as he is still in Norfolk.
What do you guys think? Good trade for both sides? Or did one team get the shaft here? Did the Orioles get fair value for their closer?
July 30, 2009; 4:55 PM ET
Categories: Dodgers , Orioles | Tags: Baltimore Orioles, george sherrill, josh bell, los angeles dodgers, steve johnson
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