DAVID MICHAEL BELL
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Nickname:   N/A Position:   MANAGER
Home: Cincinnati, OH Team:   REDS
Height: 5' 10" Bats:   R
Weight: 195 Throws:   R
DOB: 9/14/1972 Agent: Joe Bick
Uniform #: N/A  
Birth City: Cincinnati, OH
Draft: 1990 - Indians #7 - Out of high school (Cincinnati)
YR LEA TEAM SAL(K) G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB CS BB SO OBP SLG AVG
1990 GCL Indians     111 18 29 5 1 0 13 1           .261
1990 MWL BURLINGTON     42 4 7 1 1 0 2 1           .167
1991 SAL COLUMBUS, GA     491 47 113 23 1 5 63 3   37 49     .230
1992 CAR KINSTON     464 52 117 17 2 6 47 2   54 66     .252
1993 EL CANTON     483 69 141 20 2 9 60 3   43 54     .292
1994 IL CHARLOTTE   134 481 66 141 17 4 18 88 2   41 54     .293
1995 AA BUFFALO-LOUISVL   88 330 43 90 14 2 9 43 4   24 47     .273
1995 NL INDIANS $109.00 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000
1995 NL CARDINALS $109.00 39 144 13 36 7 2 2 19 1 2 4 25 .278 .368 .250
1996 NL CARDINALS $125.00 62 145 12 31 6 0 1 9 1 1 10 22 .268 .276 .214
1996 AA LOUISVILLE     136 9 24 5 1 0 7 1   7 15     .176
1997 NL CARDINALS $170.00 66 142 9 30 7 2 1 12 1 0 10 28 .261 .310 .211
1998 AL INDIANS-MARINER $200.00 128 420 48 115 29 2 10 49 0   27 62     .274
1998 AL CARDINALS $200.00 4 9 0 2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 .222 .333 .222
1998 AL INDIANS   107 340 37 89 21 2 10 41 0 4 22 54 .306 .424 .262
1998 AL MARINERS   21 80 11 26 8 0 0 8 0 0 5 8 .365 .425 .325
1999 AL MARINERS $750.00 157 597 92 160 31 2 21 78 7 4 58 90 .331 .432 .268
2000 NL REDS   19 27 5 6 0 0 2 4 0 0 4 7 .323 .444 .222
2000 AL MARINERS $1,175.00 133 454 57 112 24 2 11 47 2 3 42 66 .316 .381 .247
2001 AL MARINERS $2,200.00 135 470 62 122 28 0 15 64 2 1 28 59 .303 .415 .260
2002 NL GIANTS $2,250.00 154 552 82 144 29 2 20 73 1 2 54 80 .333 .429 .261
2003 NL PHILLIES $3,000.00 85 297 32 58 14 0 4 37 0 0 41 40 .296 .283 .195
2004 NL PHILLIES $4,200.00 143 533 67 155 33 1 18 77 1 1 57 75 .363 .458 .291
2005 NL PHILLIES $4,700.00 150 557 53 138 31 1 10 61 0 1 47 69 .310 .361 .248
2006 NL PHILLIES-BREWER $4,500.00 92 324 39 90 17 2 6 34 1 0 32 38 .345 .398 .278
2006 NL PHILLIES   92 324 39 90 17 2 6 34 1 0 32 38 .345 .398 .278
2006 NL BREWERS   53 180 21 46 10 2 4 29 2 1 18 30 .323 .400 .256
Personal
  • David's father, Buddy Bell, played for the Indians, Rangers and Reds. David's grandfather, Gus, was a Red, Pirate, Brave and Indian. So David became a third-generation Big Leaguer. It was a dream for himself, his grandfather, and his father.

    "I wanted to do it for myself, but I also wanted to make it for my Dad and Grandpa. I'm very close to them and I'd like to make them proud of me, too." 

  • David was born the year his Dad, Buddy, made the Majors. "We would buy David toys, but he wouldn't play with anything but a ball and bat," his mother, Gloria, recalled. When David was 6, Buddy started taking him on road trips. By the time he was a teen, he had seen every park in the American League, and still has vivid memories of each.

    "My first trip was to Seattle and Minnesota. The Kingdome was the first dome I'd ever been in, and I thought it was the greatest place in the world. I thought it was a huge amusement park," Bell said.

  • David and Buddy talk several times a week. But only occasionally is it about baseball. They have a friendship, David says, built on endless parental support and the realization that he is so much like his Dad, both on and off the field.
  • David also had a strong relationship with Gus Bell, his grandfather. Gus had one rule: no negativity allowed. His grandfather could find the good in anything he'd done.

    "He never said one negative thing to me my whole life," David said. "It was always encouragement."

    Gus died in 1995, suffering a heart attack. He lived just long enough to see David make the Majors.

  • David says it was both his Dad and his grandfather, Gus, who molded he and his brothers' baseball careers.
  • Growing up, David spent a lot of time in Big League clubhouses and saw a lot of players. But there was only one he tried to emulate. "This may sound kind of strange, but my eyes were on my Dad the whole game. He was my favorite player and pretty much all I cared about."
  • Like his father and grandfather, David plays solid, fundamental baseball—not with flair—but extremely competitively and with a mental outlook that keeps him on an even keel. If you watch him play for a week or two, you begin to see all the little things he does to be a winning ball player.
  • David's father constructed a makeshift batting cage in the garage of their suburban Blue Ash, Ohio home so that David and his brother Mike could hone their talent. (Editor's note: Mike got draft by the Rangers but never made it to the Majors.)
  • In 1994, David was awarded the Lou Boudreau Award. It goes to the top position player in the Cleveland organization each year.
  • It is clear from the moment you meet Bell that he is a people person. He is polite, and that is refreshing.

    TRANSACTIONS

  • June 1990: The Indians drafted Bell in the 7th round, out of Moeller High School in Cincinnati.
  • July 1995: The Cardinals sent P Ken Hill to the Indians to acquire David, P Rick Heiserman and C Pepe McNeal.
  • April 1998: The Indians got Bell back, claiming him off waivers from the Cards. And he hit an inside-the-park home run in the first inning of his first game back April 15, 1998. It was the first inside-the-park homer in Jacobs Field history.
  • August 1998: The Mariners sent 2B Joey Cora to the Indians for Bell.
  • January 1999: David signed a two-year, $1.8 million contract with the Mariners.
  • January 2002: The Giants sent INF Desi Relaford to the Mariners to acquire Bell.
  • November 2002: Bell signed a four-year, $17 million contract with the Phillies.
  • July 28, 2006: The Brewers sent P Wilfrido Laureano to the Phillies, acquiring Bell.

  • In the Mariners clubhouse, pitching coach Stan Williams dubbed David, "Gus." Williams pitched against David's grandfather, and David asked Stan to relate his memories. David relished being called "Gus."
  • David is very quiet and laid-back in the clubhouse, quietly going about his business. He doesn't draw attention to himself. He doesn't talk much, is not flashy and he doesn't even have the temper of his Dad, Buddy. He just does his job. And he is a gamer.
  • In October 2000, David did something neither his father nor his grandfather had ever done—he got a hit in a postseason game. Only Gus ever appeared in a postseason game, going 0-for-3 for the Reds in the 1961 World Series loss to the Yankees.
  • In 2002, David was a hero in Game Four of the World Series, hitting a single to lift the Giants to a 4-3 win over the Angels.
  • During the off-season before 2001 Spring Training, David added nearly 15 pounds of upper body muscle. 
  • Bell is tough, quiet and a team player. He knows the game and how to play it right. He does the little things well.
  • David's wife's name is Kristi. In 2004, the couple built a permanent home in Arizona, near his brothers and father, Buddy.

  • In 2003, while Bell was on the D.L. for an extended stretch, he found time to visit a tattoo parlor, to make good on a three-year-old promise to brothers Mike and Rick. They did it then and were waiting for Bell to follow suit. The nondescript black design resembles a star, and it rests on his left deltoid muscle. "I was extremely bored," he said, with a laugh. "It's just a design. I don't think my wife likes it."
  • With the Phillies, David wore uniform #25 in honor of his father, Buddy Bell.
  • Before David left the Phillies clubhouse to head to Milwaukee, he used one of then-Phillies teammate Chase Utley's bats, a 33 1/2-inch Louisville Slugger.

    "I just picked up one of his at-bats and used it in batting practice," Bell said. "I ordered some, but he gave me a box of his to use for now."

    At the time, Utley had a 30-game hitting streak in the works. And the streak continued after Bell left.

  • The Mitchell Report: Bell was named in a Sports Illustrated article as having ordered and received Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) from Applied Pharmacy in April 2006. Bell told the magazine at the time that he received the drug for "a medical condition." It was later believed that Bell and his wife, Kristi, were trying to start a family and HCG is often used to assist in that process.

  • April 9, 2019: MLB announced three suspensions for individuals involved in the incident between the Pirates and Reds. The incident began when Pirates pitcher Chris Archer threw a pitch that went behind the Reds’ Derek Dietrich, who had homered earlier in the game.

    Cincinnati manager David Bell was suspended, one game, and fined. He will also serve his suspension April 9.

  • All roads for the four legs of 2020 Reds Caravan led to home in Cincinnati, as each tour concluded its three-day trip of meeting and greeting fans in the region. The northern leg, led by manager David Bell and Mike Moustakas, wrapped up at the campus of Miami University-Hamilton. 

    Before Bell took the stage for a question-and-answer session with fans and MLB.com.

    MLB.com: How was your portion of the Caravan?

    Bell: "It’s been awesome. Being in Cincinnati, I get to experience and feel the excitement and energy regarding our team and that support. But I’m always blown away about how that extends beyond Cincinnati and to all of these areas that make up Reds Country. It’s really energizing. That support means a lot and goes a long way for all of us. It’s something we think about, knowing how great the support is from a large area."

    MLB: What was it like to get to know Mike Moustakas better?

    Bell: "I feel like he’s easy to get to know and connect with, even on the one day I spent with him before his press conference [in December]. But this was great having a couple of days with him and it kind of confirms everything we know about him, what he’s all about. It’s pretty clear and straightforward. He loves to play and he loves to win and cares a lot about that."

    MLB: What is your agenda between today and the first day of Spring Training?

    Bell: "It’s continuing to prepare. We have a lot of work to make sure we’re thinking of everything and as much as possible, to have every day planned out ahead of time. All of the coaches are working very hard preparing for Spring Training and working with our people in player development just making sure they’re on the same page. There’s a lot going on, and that’s a good thing. I’ll be out in Arizona for about a week and then come back to Cincinnati for a week and then go back out there for camp."

    MLB: Are there any spots that you feel are the most up for grabs at camp?

    Bell: "There’s always competition, no matter who you are. In a lot of ways, I feel like our team is pretty stable. Spring Training is an important time. Guys’ track records speak for themselves too. It’s becoming clear who will get the bulk of playing time at each position. It’s a solid team."

    MLB: Does it feel good to know who your five starting pitchers will be, barring injuries?

    Bell: "To me, we have more than that. To be in the position where we have that kind of depth but also guys who could be top of the rotation guys. Look at Tyler Mahle. It wouldn’t surprise me if he’s a top-of-the-rotation guy real soon. I get that the results in 2019 don’t show it, but he took big steps forward last year and I think it’s going to pay off for him this year." (M Sheldon - MLB.com - Jan 18, 2020)

  • Dec 14, 2020: The recent cost-cutting by the Reds' front office hasn’t cut into manager David Bell’s positivity about his club heading into 2021.

    Pending additional moves, Cincinnati will be without its best starting pitcher from 2020 in Trevor Bauer (free agent), closer Raisel Iglesias (traded), catcher Curt Casali (non-tendered), and reliever Archie Bradley (non-tendered). The Iglesias deal to the Angels for reliever Noé Ramirez saved over $9 million, for example.

    “I choose to look at the guys we do have," Bell said. "And we have the core of our team that, really, we had a great experience with last season. Guys coming together, a team coming together. A lot of success that we can build on. There have been a few changes, but the core remains the same.” (M Sheldon - MLB.com - Dec 14, 2020)

Batting
  • David Bell is a flyball hitter. He still tends to overswing and be too aggressive at the plate. Breaking pitches give him a lot of trouble. And pitchers can expose that weakness.

    He can pull the fastball—at times he pulls too often. His home runs are virtually always to left and left-center. 

  • He has learned to take the outside pitch from a lefthander the other way. He hits lefthanders far better than he used to.
  • David's 2000 season started off poorly. But his batting average rose each of the last four months, and his .316 average in September—when he hit 5 of his 11 home runs—enabled him to stay in the Majors.
  • Bell likes the ball middle in, and down in the strike zone.
  • He seems to start off slow every season. His April batting averages: In 1999, he hit .226; his all-time low was in 2000 at .171; he got back up to .205 in 2001. After hitting a career high .275 in April 2002, David dropped back down to .225 in April 2003. But amazingly, that was his best-hitting month of the 2003 season.

  • In 2002, Bell came to the Giants and solidified third base, delivered countless clutch hits, played all four infield positions, hit in six different places in the lineup (including leadoff) and was voted the most inspirational player by his teammates in a landslide vote.

    Bell's steadying influence was a big reason for the Giants making it to the post-season. David's replacement in Seattle, Jeff Cirillo, had a poor season, which helped keep the Mariners OUT OF the playoffs.

    "It's a funny thing about baseball," Seattle Times columnist Steve Kelley wrote in October 2002. "You never truly know which winter moves will be devastating, and which will be resuscitating. After losing future Hall of Famers Randy Johnson, Ken Griffey Jr. and Alex Rodriguez, the Mariners won more games than anybody ever in their league.

    "But they traded Bell in January and haven't been the same since. They won 116 games last season with Bell as their everyday third baseman. Without him, they aren't making the playoffs this year. They tinkered with the chemistry of a 116-win team. They made a trade to get Cirillo, a lifetime .300 hitter, and the deal blew up like a Roman candle."

    The low-key Bell is almost embarrassed to hear about fans and media in Seattle wishing he were back there. Some might say it, but Bell genuinely doesn't take any delight in proving people wrong. And with a horrible .195 season in 2003, he didn't help the Phillies much with his bat.

  • On July 28, 2004, David hit for the cycle during a game in which his Phillies beat the Montreal Expos 14-6. Bell doubled in the 2nd, homered in the 4th, singled in the 6th and hit a triple in the 7th inning to complete the feat his grandfather, Gus Bell, also accomplished. Gus hit for the cycle for the Pirates on June 4, 1951.
  • David is an excellent defensive player at third base. But he really does not have enough power for the position.
  • He also can be a capable utilityman, playing shortstop, second and third base. In 1999, he was the Mariners' second baseman. He turns the double play real well, staying out of harm's way on the pivot.
  • Bell has mastered the tricky art of learning how to see and adjust to ground balls hit at many different angles, which allows him to play third, second and first base with equal agility. It's not an easy task. It helps that he is so fundamentally sound, staying low to get ground balls and employing his quick reflexes to take tricky hops.

    "It's only going to help my career to play as many positions as possible," Bell said.

  • He doesn't really have the range to play shortstop, at least on an everyday basis, although he can hold his own there in an emergency.
  • His best spot defensively, is at third base, where he remains rock solid. His instincts and reactions to the ball off the bat are top-notch. Bell also has very good hands and an extremely accurate arm.
  • Baseball people like Bell's feel for and knowledge of the game. He is a solid player who has been around the game a lot with his Dad, Buddy Bell, who has had quite an impact on him.
  • David is very coachable and is an intelligent player. He knows how to play hitters.
  • He uses a glove with almost no pocket so he can throw the ball the instant he receives it.
  • ESPN's "Baseball Tonight" might not show Bell on Web Gems very often. That's by design. "Take nothing away from those guys who make those plays, or ESPN, but I try to stay off there," Bell said. "If I see myself too many times on Web Gems, I'm out of position. If you are making too many great plays, you need to change your positioning. Playing smart, positioning yourself well, getting a jump on the ball and making the routine play—that's what defense is all about."

  • In 2004, Bell struggled defensively, committing a career-high 24 errors. Part of the reason may be because he battled nagging leg and back problems most of the season.
Fielding

           MANAGERIAL/COACHING TRAITS

  • One of Bell's managerial strengths is relationship-building. Asked to describe his philosophy toward the game, he said, "Let me tell you what I enjoy. It's the relationship with players and the game. What that is all about is trying to win a game and everything that goes into that. I like spending time with players and helping them understand what that he mans. It could be something simple or very important in a game situation—all the components."
  • David is quiet, fiery and competitive. But he is also calm and laid-back.

    "When I stopped playing, [managing] was something I thought I might like to do, and I got an opportunity to do it at kind of a higher level to start with in Double-A with the Reds," Bell said. "I loved almost everything about it. I had so many opportunities to make a difference in the young players' career. The managing, I really enjoyed." (9/18/14)

  • Bell is very smart. He is a one-on-one person.

  • David and his coaching staff introduced several wrinkles to training camp in Feb., 2019. One was having pitchers participate in soccer games and take ground balls in the infield as a way of improving their cardiovascular systems and sharpening their ball-handling skills.

    Bell encouraged more enjoyable activities that achieve the same goals as the old-school drills such as running foul line to foul line.

    "They were having fun," Bell said. "But they were working. They didn't realize it because they were having so much fun, but they got a lot of work in. It's good for the athleticism. We don't want to be afraid to do things we think will benefit them." (Mark Schmetzer - Reds Report - Feb, 2020)

Running

            POST-PLAYING CAREER POSITIONS

  • 2009: Bell accepted his first managerial position as Manager for the Reds new Double-A team in the Southern League, the Carolina Mudcats.

  • 2012: David moved up to the Louisville Bats (IL-Reds) as Manager.

  • 2013: The Cubs hired Bell to be Third Base Coach under manager Dale Sveum.

  • Fall 2014:  Cardinals assistant hitting coach David Bell found a fit as the manager for the Leones del Escogido club, which plays its home games in the capitol of Santo Domingo and is run by general manager Moises Alou.

  • October 2017: Bell accepted the position of vice president of player development for the San Francisco Giants.

  • October 21, 2018: Bell became the new manager of the Reds. The moment that the Reds front office placed a No. 25 uniform on the back of Bell was the clearest sign that no one was hiding from his legacy in Cincinnati. Twenty-five is the same number that his grandfather, Gus Bell, wore for the Reds in the 1950s and his father Buddy Bell donned in the 1980s. And now it's worn by the third generation of Bells in Major League Baseball and Cincinnati.

    The Reds named Bell as their new manager and introduced him during a news conference at Great American Ball Park after they signing him to a three-year contract through the 2021 season, with a club option for 2022.

    "It's what I always wanted and what I dreamed of," Bell said. "To have an opportunity to work with people you respect and like and truly are in it to be all together with one goal, this is what I was hoping for."

  • "When you talk with people who have worked with him, you constantly hear the words loyal, smart, tough and dedicated," Reds president of baseball operations, Dick Williams said upon hiring David.

  • Sept 22, 2021: Bell agreed to terms on a new two-year contract extension, through the 2023 season. Bell and general manager Nick Krall both expected the coaching staff to return as well.

    Bell was approaching the end of his initial three-year deal to manage the team.

    “We’ve been talking about it for a few days,” Bell said. “It’s a great job. I love my job. I don’t have anything to compare it to, but there is no way in the world that I could have a better situation.” (M Sheldon - MLB.com - Sept 22, 2021)

Career Injury Report
  • April 29-June 29, 1997: He went on the D.L. with a broken bone in his left hand.
  • September 2001: Bell strained the left side of his rib-cage during a workout with the Mariners and missed the last three weeks of the season.
  • July 12-Sept 23, 2003: David was on the D.L. with a strained lower back. It turned out to be two stress fractures. But Bell spent three to four hours a day, three days a week, at Physiotherapy Associates, near his home in Phoenix. An hour of each visit was dedicated to abdominal and lower-back strengthening, with the rest filled with massage, and various weight-lifting, stretching and balancing exercises.

    Bell didn't rest during the other four days, doing programs on his own. Taking a short break after the season didn't even occur to him. During a visit to Los Angeles back specialist Dr. Robert Watkins in December 2003, David was told that one of the two stress fractures had totally healed. And in January 2004, he got full clearance for baseball-related workouts as both were healed.

  • March 12, 2004: Bell was sidelined for about a week of spring training with tendinitis in his right shoulder, which was revealed by an MRI.

  • June 4, 2004: David received a cortisone shot in his left hip.

  • March 1, 2005: Bell was diagnosed with a sprained annular ligament in his lower back. He received an epidural injection from Los Angeles-based back specialist Dr. Robert Watkins and was told to mostly rest for three weeks, while receiving lower back and abdominal therapy. He thinks the injury occurred while fielding ground balls on Feb. 21, the day before full-squad workouts began.

    "I must've twisted it the wrong way," Bell said. He would undergo a  five-hour exercise routine, which included running in a swimming pool.

  • February 26, 2006: David was shut down because of a sore left elbow that hindered his swing. But as soon as that improved, Bell "tweaked" his back. Therapy was prescribed. He was out of action for a couple of weeks. He first injured his back the first week of the 2003 season, and it has been around since then.

    Bell's back spasms were so bad that he didn't play in any Grapefruit League games during the spring.