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Rich Harden, Trevor Hoffman, Aaron Heilman All Claimed by Mystery Teams

Doug Rush@Doug_RushSenior Analyst IAugust 27, 2009

CHICAGO - JULY 26: Rich Harden #40 of the Chicago Cubs delivers the pitch during the game against the Cincinnati Reds on July 26, 2009 at Wrigley Field in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

According to FOX Sports writers Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi, Chicago Cubs pitchers Rich Harden and Aaron Heilman and Milwaukee Brewers closer Trevor Hoffman were all claimed off waivers.

No word yet as to who the teams are who claimed the three players.

The teams who claim these players have three days to work out trades with the Cubs and Brewers, or the Cubs and Brewers could let the teams just take the players along with their remaining 2009 contracts.

Late last night, it was announced that Hoffman was put on waivers and NBC Sports suggested that the Phillies could have interest in Hoffman with the struggles of Brad Lidge in 2009.

Hoffman is 41 years old and was a member of the 2009 National League All-Star team with a 1-1 record, a 1.85 ERA and 27 saves.

Harden is 8-7 with a 3.99 ERA in 22 starts with 143 strikeouts.  At 27, Harden will be a free agent at the end of 2009, so he would be a one-two month rental for a contending team.

Harden is making about $7 million dollars this season, so he is quite an expensive rental, but has stayed fairly healthy in 2009.  Rosenthal suggested teams like the Rockies, Giants and Dodgers all possibly having interest in Harden.

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Heilman was awarded to a National League team's claim, but again, nobody knows who the team was.  Heilman is 2-3 with a 4.55 in 57 appearances with Chicago.  Heilman had a rough ending with the Mets, but has done fairly well with the Cubs.

All three players could help a team in the playoff chase.  With the Dodgers sliding and the Rockies climbing up the NL West race, it could make sense for Los Angeles to go after someone like Harden.

As far as Heilman and Hoffman go, everyone needs relief help because arms start getting tired so anyone from the Phillies, Rockies, Dodgers and Cardinals could all have interest.

The deadline for waiver deadline deals is Monday, August 31.  By then, we should see a few more deals and claims pick up, while finding out who the mystery teams were that picked up on Harden, Hoffman and Heilman.

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