30 Players: Josh Bell Ready To Showcase Bat For Pirates

By Wealthy Arleo

CBS Native Sports activities, in our 30 Gamers 30 Days spring coaching function, profiles one younger participant from every Main League Baseball workforce main as much as opening day.

2016 season (Minors): 114 G, 421 AB, .295 BA, 14 HR, 60 RBI, three SB, .850 OPS

2016 season (Majors): forty five G, 128 AB, .273 BA, three HR, 19 RBI, zero SB, .775 OPS

Josh Bell has been surrounded by hype ever because the Pirates drafted him within the second spherical of the 2011 MLB Draft and gave him a second-spherical report $5 million to persuade him to forego his school dedication. Bell’s monitor to the bigs hasn’t essentially been an categorical practice, however after impressing in a brief stint with the Pirates final yr he appears prepared to stay for a full rookie season in Pittsburgh.

Becoming a member of the group as an outfielder, Bell hit his first house run as a 19-yr-previous and had thirteen homers, seventy six RBIs and a .279/.353/.453 line in his first full professional season at Class A in ‘thirteen. With Andrew McCutchen locked into the outfield and prime prospects Gregory Polanco and Starling Marte on their option to type the Pirates’ excellent outfield we now see at this time, Bell’s path to the Majors wasn’t clear. In ‘14, the group determined to maneuver Bell to first base, and that’s the place he performed final season and the place he’s anticipated to start out in ‘17.

Bell’s protection continues to be beneath development, however that’s not what he’s recognized for and doubtless gained’t ever be. The place Bell shines is on the plate, and the 24-yr-previous has been capable of present progress offensively at each degree. In 487 Minor League video games over 5 seasons, Bell hit .303/.373/.454 with forty four homers, 111 doubles and 285 RBIs.

The facility was all the time anticipated to be a piece in progress with Bell as he grew within the group, and it actually took a step ahead final yr together with his Minor League-greatest 14 homers for Triple-A Indianapolis. For somebody his measurement (6-foot-2, 240 kilos) Bell isn’t your typical swing-and-miss slugging first baseman. Bell struck out simply 19 occasions in 152 plate appearances final yr, good for a Okay% of 12.5 that may have lead the league amongst first baseman final yr had he had sufficient plate appearances to qualify.

Bell confirmed unimaginable plate self-discipline all through the Minor Leagues and it was no totally different in his debut within the bigs. If certified, his 24.eight O-Swing% (outdoors-swing proportion), 7.6 SwStr% (swinging-strike proportion) and eighty two.9 Contact% would all have been prime six amongst first basemen in ‘sixteen.

Spring Coaching hasn’t been variety to Bell early on, and in his…

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