Josh Bell found out last night that he would be heading for Baltimore to make his Major League debut with the Orioles.
He told reporters in the O’s clubhouse a few moments ago he was not expecting to get this call so soon.
“Not at all. It’s a blessing, I guess. I’m ready. I found out last night when we got back in from Charlotte. My manager called me in and told me about Luke (Scott). He said they are going to need somebody and to head up.”
Not long after walking into the O’s clubhouse he saw his name in the lineup, batting seventh at third base.
“It’s a good feeling, just anxious a little bit. I’m ready to get after it. I feel good, I thought I’d be more nervous. I’m trying to control it and focus.”
Bell’s stats have improved throughout the season at Norfolk. He hit .238 with three homers and 10 RBI and an OPS of .661 in April and then in June went .272-4-19 with an OPS of .840.
“Just mainly trying to get my pitch. Before I was trying to hit everything and trying to do too much. Just tried to settle down and hit my pitch. I know there are things I have to work on. I knew when they felt it was best, that I’d be up here.”
Bell is batting .277-10-38 vs. right-handed pitching and .233-0-6 vs. lefties, but says he’s made progress from the right side.
“It’s definitely a lot better. In the first month I had, maybe 15 at bats or so, so at first it was a little shaky. Now that I’ve been seeing lefty pitching, I’ve been doing well. So I’m ready to go.”
Bell says he has made improvements as the season has gone on.
“I definitely can feel that I’m doing better, but there are still things I need to work on. I’m not exactly where I wanted to be but I feel good and I’m ready.
“Just everything, fine tune everything. It’s not about getting here, you want to contribute and stay here.”
He knows the Orioles are ready to give young players like him a chance right now.
“Anytime you get an opportunity, you know there are a lot of guys that have played but haven’t had the opportunity. You just want to help the ballclub win.”
He said he did not seek out anyone with the Tides or Orioles for any advice on making his first big league start.
“No. I was pretty well aware. I’ve had some good buddies of mine in the past that prepared me for it, so I’m ready.”
Bell was asked which one person he most wanted to see him make his Major League debut.
“My dad. My dad passed away. He’s watching down and hopefully he’ll enjoy this.”