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Padres - Bell taking nothing for granted

Discussion in 'All Other San Diego Sports' started by wrbanwal, Feb 28, 2008.

  1. wrbanwal

    wrbanwal Well-Known Member

    Dec 27, 2005
    Workhorse reliever emerged as top setup man last season

    Click link for entire article


    PEORIA, Ariz. -- Success poked holes in Heath Bell's cover of anonymity last season, though that doesn't mean the San Diego reliever can't still pretend that he's a nobody.

    "I'm trying not to get a big head," Bell said Wednesday. "I know that I've made a name for myself, but I'm not going to change anything. I'm here working out early and staying late. I'm pretending that I'm still trying to make the team."

    Making the team was Bell's primary goal a year ago. He was a newcomer, obtained in a winter deal with the Mets. He knew few players in the clubhouse, though that didn't stop him from doing his job and, eventually, making the team.

    "You don't know until it starts playing out. We saw his stuff in the spring and realized that, yeah, he was pretty good," Padres manager Bud Black said of Bell. "But there were a lot of guys with good stuff. He just had to do it in competition."

    Bell emerged as one of the top setup pitchers in the National League in 2007, appearing in the fifth-most games (81) in the league while compiling the second-most holds (34) in the NL and the most innings pitched by a reliever (92 2/3).

    All told, Bell was 6-4 with a 2.02 ERA with 102 strikeouts and only 30 walks. Opposing batters hit just .185 against him.

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