The 2022 MLB season was a tale of two stories for MLBbro Josh Bell. Prior to the season Bell signed a 1 year/ $10 million contract with the Washington Nationals.

This was meant to be a prove it deal after his 2020 season with the Pittsburgh Pirates was poor and his 2021 season was solid after being traded to the aforementioned Nationals.

Well aware of this fact, Bell knew this was his opportunity to try and perform and receive what may be his last lucrative contract. With this in mind, Bell came into the 2022 season with razor sharp focus.


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Josh Bell started the season on fire and was dynamic for the last place Washington Nationals. With his hot bat it seemed inevitable that he would be in line for a big payday once the season ended. But whenever there is a dynamic player with am affordable contract, there is always a postseason contender looking to acquire their services.

There was no difference in this case when the San Diego Padres traded for MLBbro Josh Bell at the trade deadline. Meant to be an asset to the big prize, Juan Soto, the switch hitting first baseman Bell provided the Padres with much needed versatility in their lineup. However, a change of scenery did not help Bell.


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Josh Bell’s Season Was Front Heavy In 2022

In 103 games with the Nationals, Bell batted .301 with 14 home runs and 57 RBI. These numbers had Bell positioned to lock in a great payday. But Bell’s hitting prowess did not come with him to the west coast. In 53 games with the Padres, Bell’s batting average was a mere .192. Bell amassed a 3.4 WAR during his time in Washington, but only a -0.4 WAR in San Diego. This changed the entire outlook of his production for the overall 2022 MLB season. He would finish with a .266 batting average, with most of his power numbers being a product of his time on the afterthought Nationals squad.



Josh Bell Did Enough To Get A Sweet Deal 

Bells’ early productivity and late playoff contributions set him up for a nice bag in free agency. The Cleveland Guardians won the American League Central division last season and recorded 92 wins. However, one aspect of offense that Terry Francona’s well-rounded squad was missing is power. It’s hard to win a World Series these days without big boppers in your lineup and Cleveland was second to last in MLB with 127 homers, just 17 more than the offensively inept Detroit Tigers (110).

Understanding their needs, the Guardians agreed to terms on a two-year, $33 million contract with free agent Bell to come ring some heads in Ohio. Adding MLBbro Bell — who has averaged 25 homers and 89 RBI per 162 games in his career with the Pittsburgh Pirates, Washington Nationals and San Diego Padres — to play first base also opens up more time at DH for rising MLBbro Josh Naylor and definitely gives them another power threat in the lineup.

Can Josh Bell Provide Consistent Power For Guardians In 2023?

Bell showed flashes of a stud who can help anchor a lineup with the Nationals, and also someone who should only be related to part-time DH duty with the Padres.  In 2023, at age 30, here’s hoping that Josh Bell uses the next two seasons to establish himself as a top first baseman in the game and an All-Star.

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