Josh Bell, Pittsburgh Pirates prospect prepares to enter the cage at Pirates City.

MLB Rumors: Pirates Josh Bell Held Back In Extended Spring Training?

An article on the premium Baseball Prospectus site had some nice, and some not-so-optimistic things to say about some of the Pittsburgh Pirates prospects.  The article was written by Minor League Update author Zach Mortimer who has been down in Florida the past few weeks and sent some reports to the Baseball Prospectus staff on what he saw.

From the BP article we learn that the “the reports weren’t originally intended for publication, but we thought you’d enjoy reading Zach’s raw scouting notes as much as we did, so we’ve collected all of them in the article below.

One comment stood out to us.  In a big, big way.  It’s one thing for us to critique Josh Bell, it’s another for a writer like Mortimer to say this:

Josh Bell, OF: Average arm; below to well below-average runner; switch hitter; slow bat; trouble with tracking pitches; naturally strong; loud load from right side. Bell has not looked like a top prospect this spring and will need to regroup before beginning the 2013 season. I would not be surprised if the Pirates held Bell back in extended spring to work on hitting mechanics.

Now that would suck.  Here is what he said about Hanson and we agree on the defense, he has some work to do.  We can’t see how he makes it as a big league shortstop unless he tightens some defects up rather quickly.

Alen Hanson, IF: Plus runner; good bat speed; crushes mistakes; sits back on balls defensively; will have to move to second; will hammer mistakes, and has no problem letting you know he did so. However, I have my concerns that he might struggle against quality pitching and profile much better as a mid- to high-5 as opposed to a role-6 player.

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