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Kolb for Closer?


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Marlins zero in on Kolb

 

By Joe Capozzi

 

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

 

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

 

LAKE BUENA VISTA ? The Marlins may be closing in on their next bullpen reclamation project, but they'll have to open their wallet to get him.

 

Former All-Star closer Dan Kolb is intrigued with the idea of trying to revive his career with the Marlins, who play at pitcher-friendly Dolphin Stadium, said Damon Lapa, Kolb's agent.

 

 

Lapa said he expects to talk to the Marlins again this week, following up on a brief conversation he had last week with General Manager Admin Beinfest.

 

"The Marlins are definitely near the top of the list,'' Lapa said, refering to six teams that have expressed interest in the right-hander.

 

"He is very open about it. He likes the ballpark. He likes the core of good young players. He could be a great mentor to (future Marlins closer Taylor) Tankersley.''

 

Kolb, 31, was an All-Star with the Milwaukee Brewers in 2004 when had 39 saves and posted a 2.98 ERA.

 

But he hasn't been the same since he was traded to the Atlanta Braves during the 2004 winter meetings.

 

Kolb struggled in Atlanta with a 5.93 ERA and 11 saves. He signed with the Brewers as a free agent after the 2005 season and went 2-2 for Milwaukee with one save and a 4.84 ERA.

 

He had a 6.28 ERA in the first half of the year, but his ERA in the second half dropped to 2.75.

 

Lapa said Kolb, who has had no significant health problems in his eight-year career, is also intrigued by the success enjoyed in Florida by Armando Benitez in 2004, Todd Jones in 2005 and Joe Borowski in 2006. All three closers revived their careers after a strong season with the Marlins.

 

But Kolb wants to make at least $2.3 million, the amount he made last season. His statistics in 2006 are similar to La Troy Hawkins, who signed a $3.5 million deal with the Rockies for 2007 after going 3-2 with a 4.48 ERA in Baltimore.

 

Although the Marlins have indicated their payroll won't rise drastically over last year's $14.9 million, sources said the front office has earmarked money for a veteran closer.

 

Major League Baseball's new TV deal, which kicks in next spring, will pay every club $20 million each, and last summer's sale of the Washington Nationals netted each team another $10 million.

 

Baldelli in center? Multiple baseball sources said Monday the Marlins continue to have strong interest in Rocco Baldelli, but Florida is reluctant to part with any starting pitcher Tampa Bay would want in exchange for the Devil Rays' center fielder.

 

Baldelli is due to make $750,000 in 2007 with incentives that could push the value to over $2 million. The Marlins also still have interest in Elijah Dukes, who played center field for Class AAA Durham.

 

To replace backup first baseman Wes Helms, the Marlins are considering Jose Hernandez, a right-handed hitter who split the 2006 season with Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

 

Hernandez, 37, made $850,000 while batting .263 with three home runs and 19 RBI. He played every position except pitcher and catcher last season.

 

Seen and heard: White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said he had dinner in Miami on Sunday with fellow Venezuelan Miguel Cabrera. "He has lost 15 pounds. He is going to have a great year,'' Guillen predicted of the Marlins' All-Star third baseman ... The tradition of Marlins managers who smoke cigars apparently will start again under new manager Fredi Gonzalez, who arrived at the meetings and was promptly whisked outside by former Marlins manager Jack McKeon to smoke stogies.

 

 

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/marlins/conte...rlins_1205.html

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The last two seasons Kolb has 12 saves and 9 blown saves with a WHIP of 1.70. This is NOT the closer we want. A soft-tosser with bad control.

 

How have our division rivals done against Kolb the past three seasons?

 

vs. Braves: .364 average against

vs. Mets .342

vs. Phillies .225

vs. Nats .321

 

Kolb's history

@ Dolphins Stadium .320

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The last two seasons Kolb has 12 saves and 9 blown saves with a WHIP of 1.70. This is NOT the closer we want. A soft-tosser with bad control.

 

How have our division rivals done against Kolb the past three seasons?

 

vs. Braves: .364 average against

vs. Mets .342

vs. Phillies .225

vs. Nats .321

 

Kolb's history

@ Dolphins Stadium .320

 

Despite those numbers, i'd still take a chance on him. Joe Borowski's numbers were pretty ugly the two previous seasons prior to his time here too. If he comes cheap enough, why not?

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