Josh Bell Back In The Burgh With A Bang

Josh Bell Back In The Burgh With A Bang

After playing 552 games as a member of the Pirates, Josh Bell made his return to the Burgh over the weekend and highlighted it with a moonshot home run.

Josh Bell was back in the Steel City where his Major League career began back in 2016 and Bucco Nation made sure to show him plenty of love.

They greeted the Nationals first baseman with a standing ovation before his first PNC Park at bat as a member of the road team.

Bell hit 86 home runs and drove in 309 runs during his five years with the Pirates, and in the sixth inning of Friday night’s game he proved his comfort in the Pittsburgh batters box by hitting a solo home run to extend Washington’s lead to 3-1.

However that lead would not stand up for long: Pirates MLBbro Anthony Alford answered Bell’s bomb with a homer of his own to cut the deficit to one, then later on in the game, their young phenom Ke’Bryan Hayes sent folks home happy with the first walk off hit of his career.

During the weekend series Bell was 3-for-9 with five walks, two runs and that home run as his Nationals could only salvage one win out of the three games.

Bell finished third in Rookie of the Year voting in 2017 and was named as an All-Star for the Pirates in 2019.  That year he hit .277 with career highs in home runs, average, OPS, slugging percentage, hits, doubles and runs.

That year was also Bell’s second time homering 25 or more times for the Pirates, and with him already passing that mark this season, he became just the second player in Major League history to hit 25 home runs for the Nationals/ Montreal Expos and the Pirates joining former first baseman Adam LaRoche.

Bell is one of the few pieces that stayed in Washington after their fire sale during the trade deadline.  His year started off slow as he only hit .113 for the month of April and has been fighting to rise the average ever since.

“I feel good as of late,” said Bell to reporters before Friday night’s game.  “I had a really rough start that I had to work my way out of.  Thank God it wasn’t a 60-game season again.  I kind of turned things around.”

He signed a one-year deal with the Nationals this offseason and is now batting .253 with 26 home runs, a .813 OPS and 81 RBI.

He has definitely earned himself  a payday after this season whether he gets it in D.C. or with a new franchise.

Bell is now chasing the 30-homer mark during this final month of the season.  Showing those numbers during contract negotiations can only help his cause.

This week he and his Nationals will take on the “Bahamian Blur” Jazz Chisholm Jr. and the Miami Marlins.

Josh Bell Showed & Proved This Season…That’s The Tweet

Josh Bell Showed & Proved This Season…That’s The Tweet

Rachel Hill gives her Two Cents about Washington Nationals first baseman Josh Bell. The rising star was considered expendable by the Pittsburgh Pirates coming off COVID season in 2020.

Young, power hitting corner infielders don’t grow on trees but Bell’s 37 homers in 2019 didn’t mean much to the perennial bottom feeders.

That’s okay because the 29-year-old slugger is approachign his peak and he will be a huge part of the Nationals’ rebuild, along with Juan “Young Genius” Soto and top pitching prospect Jo Jo Gray.

 

#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 Black & Brown MLB Players (Week 21)

#HIGHFIVE | Top 5 Black & Brown MLB Players (Week 21)

We are dancing into September, the final month of the regular season and the official beginning of the race for pennants and playoff spots.

It is also the final chance for players to make their cases for MVP considerations, and Yankees All-Star Aaron Judge has put his name atop the ballot with his play and the team’s current hot streak. 

For that, he takes the top spot on Week 21 of our #HighFive List.

1. Aaron Judge  

We have been saying it all year, and it becomes clearer and clearer with each passing day; Aaron Judge should have his name in every conversation when discussing who should win the American League MVP award.

Even though Judge was named as a starter for the American League All-Star team, he still has gone underappreciated and undervalued on talk shows and other media outlets.

 

Home Boi Highlights | Aaron Judge

 

Last week Judge was in the four spot on our #High/Five list and also earned the honor of being named Rob Parker’s Home Boi Highlights.

Judge has yet to slow down, specifically since the trade deadline where the Yankees went from basement dwellers to the front runners to make it into the one game wild card play-in.

Over his last seven games, Judge is batting .500 yes .500!! He has powered three home runs and driven in 10 RBI while posting a .893 slugging percentage and an on base percentage over .540.

The numbers for Judge over his last 26 games have put the rest of the Majors on notice, as he continues to prove he is a top 10 player in the game.  He is slashing .368/.456/.684 with six doubles, eight home runs, 28 RBI and four steals 

The Yankees now claim a two-game lead for the top wild card spot and will look to extend it against Cedric Mullins and the Baltimore Orioles.

 

2. Devin Williams

Last year’s National League Rookie of the Year Devin Williams got off to a slow start to begin his sophomore campaign, but lately he has shown he is one of the top relief pitchers in the game.

 

During the month of August, Williams pitched 14 innings and did not give up a single earned run.  He also struck out 22 batters and only walked three.

Williams is proving this year that last year’s Rookie of the Year season was no fluke. 

Over his last 30 games, Williams has a 0.32 ERA in 28 innings with 43 strikeouts, a 0.93 and only one earned run.

Last season, in 27 innings he had a 0.33 ERA with 53 strikeouts and a 0.63 WHIP

3. Josh Bell

Most parts of the Nationals 2021 season may be forgettable, but the play of Josh Bell cannot go unnoticed.  He has been a regular on our #High/Five list as last week he found himself and the five spot.

 

Bell’s week was highlighted by a two-homer performance against the Mets on Sunday.

His hitting streak was extended to nine games with an RBI single Thursday against the Phillies and he also has hits in 14 of his last 15 games.

Over his last seven games Bell is batting .400 with two home runs, six RBI and three runs scored.

This weekend Bell and his Nationals travel to Sunny South Beach to take on Jazz Chisholm Jr. and the Miami Marlins.

4. Giancarlo Stanton

Giancarlo Stanton is the heavyweight champion of all Big League batters, and he claims the four spot on our #High/Five list as he continues to storm through the second half of the season.

Stanton put on a light show in the batter’s box last week.  He homered in four consecutive games then added another one three days later.

During Stanton’s last seven games he has four home runs, seven RBI, four runs and a .778 slugging percentage.

The two Twin Towers of Power in New York will travel to Baltimore for a Labor Day weekend series against the O’s.

5. Derek Hill

Derek Hill makes his first appearance this season on our #High/Five list this year and becomes the second Tiger to claim the honor after Akil “The Thrill” Baddoo.

Derek Hill Is A Multi-Talented Spark Plug For The Detroit Tigers | The MLBbro Was Mashing This Week

Hill is one of the best young defenders patrolling center field that the Majors has to offer, but his first career time hitting home runs in back-to-back games is what propelled him this week.

Over his last seven games, Hill is hitting .333 with a .667 slugging percentage, two home runs and four runs scored.

This weekend Hill and the Tigers will battle against the wild card hopeful Cincinnati Reds.

#HIGHFIVE: Top 5 Black & Brown MLB Players (Week 15)

#HIGHFIVE: Top 5 Black & Brown MLB Players (Week 15)

Even though the Bros put on a post-All-Star week hitting clinic, the Met’s durag-rockin’ Black Knight from Long Island AKA Marcus “Stro Show” Stroman takes the top spot in Week 15 of our #HighFive list.

1. Marcus Stroman

 

Marcus Stroman had two very interesting starts this week, but we will start with the one that may be the best of his career:

 

 

Wednesday he was both a hit and a walk away from perfection against the Cincinnati Reds.  In eight innings he struck out seven batters while only allowing one hit and one walk.  What might have been most impressive is he accomplished this in just 90 pitches, on a day the Met’s bullpen needed off in the worst way. 

 

 

Out of the 26 hitters Stroman faced, he threw a first-pitch strike to 21 of them.  He became the first Mets pitcher with an eight-inning shutout allowing just one hit or fewer since Jacob DeGrom in 2016. 

 

 

His Black Knight partner Taijuan Walker and former Cy Young rotation mate, Jacob DeGrom, got the accolade of being named 2021 All-Stars this season, but Stroman has been the one holding it down with consistency in the rotation. 

He is one of 13 pitchers to make 20 starts this season and carries a 2.58 ERA.

Now, to Stroman and the Pittsburgh Pirates executing a classic WWE impression:

 

 

After getting Pirates John Nogowski to line out in the fifth inning of Friday night’s game, Stroman pounded his glove and tried to fire up his dugout.  Nogowski took exception to that, and after, words were exchanged and the benches cleared. No punches were thrown, but it might not be a good idea to have those two in the same room for a while.  

In that game, he finished five innings allowing just two runs and striking out three.

2. Mookie Betts

 

Lately, Mookie Betts has gotten back to being one of the best hitters in all of baseball and before a hip injury caused him to miss a few days this week, he was on an absolute tear. 

In his past five games before only appearing only as a pinch-hitter Monday night, Betts was 12-for-16 at the plate for a .750 batting average.  Over that stretch, he had three home runs, four doubles, eight RBI and 12 runs.  That earned him a spot on Rob Parker’s Home Boi Highlights.

 

Home Boi Highlights | Mookie Betts

 

Betts has been out of the lineup during the Dodgers’ series against the first-place Giants and manager Dave Roberts has not ruled out him requiring time on the Injured List.

 

 

3. Tim Anderson

Ever since Tim Anderson saw his name left off of the original All-Star Game Roster, he became a different animal at the plate, showing why he has a batting championship in his trophy case. 

Despite having his 16-game hitting streak snapped on Tuesday, he is batting .323 with three home runs, four RBI, eight runs and two steals.  That leaves him currently sitting in 10th place for the league’s batting title. 

 

Tim Anderson Is Scorched Earth As Hit Streak Balloons To 16

 

This weekend Anderson leads his White Sox into the city of current title town Milwaukee to face the Brewers in what will be one of the best series this season in baseball. 

 

 

4. Akil “The Real Deal” Baddoo

 

Baddoo Mania is back, as he has been putting the throttle down on his campaign to win American League Rookie of the Year.  Over his last seven games, Baddoo has three home runs, including two during the team’s four-game sweep of the Texas Rangers.

 

 

The energy Baddoo can bring to the leadoff spot has carried throughout the entire Tigers lineup, as they have become one of the most exciting teams to watch in the Majors. 

They are the only team to not suffer a loss since returning from the All-Star break as they swept the Twins over the weekend in the Motor City. 

 

Akil “The Real Deal” Baddoo Has Leaped Over Rookie Wall & Is Back To Bashing

 

5. Josh Bell

 

Josh has answered the Bell at the plate lately as he lands the final spot on this week’s #HighFive list.  Since June 1st he is one of three National League first baseman to have at least seven home runs and a batting average over .300. The other two being All-Star Starter Freddie Freeman and the Cardinals Paul Goldschmidt. 

Bell had a seven-game hitting streak snapped after going 0-for-4 Wednesday but homered in back-to-back games to begin the week. 

 

Over his last 15 games, Bell is hitting .286 with 16 hits, eight runs batted in and seven runs. 

 

The Nationals are trying to tread water while trying to get their team back to full strength, but with Bell along with Josh Harrison and former World Series MVP Juan Soto holding down the lineup (and them only being six games back of the Mets for first place in the NL East) they may be in store for a run.