2020 MLB Draft Guide Player Profile: Josh Bell
Colby Conway takes a closer look at Josh Bell in order to let fantasy baseball owners know what to expect from the Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman during the 2020 MLB season.
Up until 2019, Pittsburgh first baseman Josh Bell was a James Loney type, meaning he didn’t provide the power numbers others did at the position. Bell wasn’t necessarily a great source of batting average, as he hit .255 and .261 in 2017 and 2018. However, something clicked in 2019 for Bell. In 143 games, he slugged 37 home runs, scored 94 runs, drove in 116 and slashed .277/.367/.569. It was a monster season for Bell and he rewarded fantasy owners handsomely. Losing Starling Marte hurts the lineup as a whole, but there are some young guys that are poised to hit for a decent average, so perhaps his RBI total doesn’t take too much of a hit from last year. Is 2020 comparable to 2019 for Bell, or going to see some regression and he returns to an average producer in terms of power?
First and foremost, Bell was a Statcast freak last season. He ranked in the 90th percentile or better in average exit velocity, hard hit rate, xwOBA and xSLG. It was an exceptional season for Bell, and...