Hitting coach Bell departs Pirates for Reds
By Travis Sawchik
Published: Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013, 8:42 a.m.
After one season as Pirates hitting coach when he presided over uneven production, Jay Bell left the organization this week to become the Cincinnati Reds' bench coach, the Pirates confirmed Tuesday.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said he had interviewed candidates over the last two days and already has a favorite in mind to replace Bell: assistant hitting coach Jeff Branson, who has been in the organization for 13 years.
“(Branson) has sweat equity in our organization,” Hurdle said. “I'm not a big fan of turnover. If we go outside, it would be a third guy in three years. So I'd say, yeah, he's probably the favorite.”
Whoever replaces Bell will be charged with improving offensive production. In the National League, the Pirates ranked ninth in runs (161), 11th in batting average (.245) and third in strikeouts (1,330) under Bell.
Bell, a former Pirates shortstop, and new Reds manager Bryan Price worked together in the Arizona Diamondbacks organization from 2007-09 when Price was the team's pitching coach.
“I've known for a long time that Jay has a relationship professionally and personally with Bryan Price,” Hurdle said.
“When he shared his thoughts with me, I'm all for people being happy.”
Travis Sawchik is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @Sawchik_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Rise of Pirates’ Polanco is old-school success story for new-age franchise
- Stats Corner: Can Pirates’ bullpen keep escaping jams?
- Pirates prospects Meadows, McGuire help bolster top-rated farm system
- Pirates notebook: Volquez focused on process, not poor results
- Pirates starting pitcher Gerrit Cole diversifies pitch-mix portfolio
- Pirates pitching coach Searage builds trust, foundation with pitchers
- Despite strong spring, top Bucs prospect Polanco optioned to Triple-A
- Top pitching prospect Taillon’s time with Pirates must wait a bit
- Healthy Pirates closer Grilli ready for encore
- Pirates notebook: Maddon sees comparisons between 2014 Bucs, 2009 Rays
- Spring training breakdown: Rays 6, Pirates 3