Mesa, Bell are among protected

The protected lists that were revealed yesterday for next week's National League expansion draft provided a few surprises involving former Orioles.

The Cleveland Indians had only four pitchers on their 15-man list -- the fewest of the 26 existing teams -- but one of them was Jose Mesa. He was traded to the Indians last July, when the Orioles finally gave up on him.


Shortstop Juan Bell, who failed to impress after being the principal figure in the Eddie Murray trade four years ago, was one of seven infielders protected by the Philadelphia Phillies.

However, neither of the players sent to San Diego for Craig Lefferts, shortstop Ricky Gutierrez and pitcher Erik Schullstrom, were protected by the Padres. Neither was Murray, who signed a two-year contract with the Mets last year.


The biggest surprise of all was San Diego including outfielder Darrell Sherman on its protected list. Sherman is the small but speedy outfielder the Orioles selected from the Padres in the Rule V draft a year ago. He was subsequently returned to the Padres for half the $50,000 draft fee, went back to the minor leagues and then impressed his new/old team enough to be kept out of the expansion draft.

That means Sherman improved at least 26 places in the eyes of the Padres, who left him off their 40-man roster a year ago, but included him on the 15-man list this time around.

Protected Orioles

The Orioles players protected from being taken in the National League expansion draft, according to the Chicago Tribune:

Pitchers: Todd Frohwirth, Ben McDonald, Alan Mills, Mike Mussina, Gregg Olson, Brad Pennington, Arthur Rhodes.

Catcher: Chris Hoiles.

Infielders: Manny Alexander, Leo Gomez, Cal Ripken, David Segui.

Outfielders: Brady Anderson, Mike Devereaux, Luis Mercedes.