MLB.com Columnist

Bill Ladson

Nats release reliever Bell among roster moves

Nats release reliever Bell among roster moves

VIERA, Fla. -- After beating the Yankees, 7-6, on Monday afternoon, the Nationals released reliever Heath Bell. According to Bell, the Nationals told him they didn't have a roster spot for him.

In seven games this spring, Bell allowed four earned runs in 6 1/3 innings with seven strikeouts. He picked up the save on Monday with a perfect inning of work.

Bell said he hopes to play with a Major League team this season.

"The front office made the decision that they didn't have any roster spots, so they let me go to have an opportunity to go with another club," Bell said via telephone. "I'm going to weigh my options and go from there."

Most of Bell's success came with the Padres. In his five years in San Diego (2007-11), he saved 134 games and recorded a 2.53 ERA. Over the last three years, however, he struggled with the Marlins, D-backs and Rays. For Tampa Bay in 2014, he allowed 14 earned runs in 17 1/3 innings.

The Nationals also optioned right-hander Taylor Jordan to Triple-A Syracuse and reassigned right-hander Evan Meek and infielder Matt Skole to Minor League camp.

Skole had a great spring, going 9-for-22 (.409) while playing third and first base. Meek was not productive during camp, allowing four runs in 4 2/3 innings. Jordan, who was in the Opening Day rotation last year, allowed three runs in eight innings.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.