By Jason Shetler
Pirates GM Neal Huntington mentioned on his radio show Sunday that Josh Bell will be reintroduced to the outfield. This decision does not affect his status as a first baseman.
The Pirates originally selected Bell as an outfielder when they took him in the second round of the 2011 MLB Draft. During his first three seasons in the minors, he played 179 games in the outfield, all of those coming as a right fielder.
Bell made the switch to first base during the Arizona Fall League in 2014. As expected with a new position, he had significant struggles, committing 16 errors last season. This year, he’s committed 10 errors to this point at first base.
Last weekend, the Pirates called up Bell from AAA Indianapolis. He didn’t get to play any defense, but wound up making a huge impression at the plate, as he collected two hits, one of which a grand slam, and drew a couple free passes. Bell was optioned back to Indianapolis prior to Saturday’s game in Washington as the corresponding move for Gerrit Cole’s return from the disabled list.