Pirates’ Josh Bell taking place alongside league’s best hitters | TribLIVE.com

Pirates’ Josh Bell taking place alongside league’s best hitters

Jerry DiPaola
The Pirates’ Josh Bell hits a two-run double during the first inning against the Cardinals on Sunday, May 12, 2019, in St. Louis.

After 37 games, the Pittsburgh Pirates (20-17) are three games over .500 and owners of an 8-3 record after ending an eight-game losing streak April 30.

One of the big reasons is the emergence of Josh Bell as one of the game’s top hitters.

Bell tied a career high with four hits and set a personal best with five RBIs in the Pirates’ 10-6 victory Sunday in St. Louis.

Bell’s 34 RBIs lead the team, rank seventh in the majors and are two more than the next two players on the Pirates’ list — Starling Marte and Colin Moran — combined. He also has 10 home runs. Marte and Jung Ho Kang (tied for second) have only four apiece.

It’s too early in the season, and Bell hasn’t been in the majors long enough to be considered in the same class as Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, but let’s compare their seasons, anyway.

Bell has them beat in five important statistical categories: home runs, RBIs, batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage.

Bell: 10/34/.319/.389/.659

Harper: 7/25/.229/.376/.450

Machado: 8/21/.252/.325/.437

By the way, the victory Sunday was the Pirates’ first by more than three runs since March 31.

It might be too early to declare the offense out of its early-season slump. After all, the Pirates needed great pitching to win back-to-back 2-1 decisions against the Cardinals on Friday and Saturday.

But scoring a total of seven runs in two late innings Sunday was impressive, especially for a team whose season high for an entire game was only seven.

Love baseball? Stay up-to-date with the latest Pittsburgh Pirates news.

Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Sports | Pirates
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.