MLB Trade Rumors: St. Louis Cardinals Still Hunting Heath Bell Post-Colby Rasmus

24 hours after the St. Louis Cardinals' worrying trade of Colby Rasmus, word has gotten out that they're still interested in trading for even more replaceable veteran free agents: They're still in on Heath Bell, according to Joe Strauss, who seems to suggest the Cardinals might trade one of their best relievers--who is still free and under team control--to pick up their white whale of a closer.

The Rasmus trade can be defended, as terrible a defense as it is; I find it impossible to mount a defense for trading Heath Bell for Jason Motte. In addition to minimizing how much better the bullpen gets, by replacing one of its best relievers with a slightly better reliever, they also do even more to damage their 2012 and 2013 prospects, a day after dropping their top young pre-free-agent for a guy who's a free agent after 2011. Rasmus can be blamed on Tony La Russa, who turned a toxic situation positively poisonous with his late-night comments. But if a Heath Bell trade gets made at this point, with Kyle McClellan and Octavio Dotel in the bullpen at a great cost, John Mozeliak is just making a terrible decision.

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