Jay Bell returned to the Pittsburgh organization on October 31, 2012, when he was named the club's Major League Hitting Coach. He spent eight years as the team's shortstop from 1989 to 1996, setting a career high with a .310 batting average and being named to the Silver Slugger team in 1993. He also captured a Rawlings Gold Glove Award in 1993 after committing a leaguelow 11 errors and was named to the National League All-Star team that season.
This past November, Bell served as the Hitting Coach for the New Zealand National Team in the World Baseball Classic qualifying tournament in Taipei City, Taiwan (the Diamondblacks lost to Taiwan in the final game). He also served as a coach for Team USA in 2010 during the Pro Am qualifier in Puerto Rico and in 2011 during the World Cup played in Panama, along with the Pan Am games played in Mexico.
Following an 18-year Major League playing career in which he hit .265 with 195 home runs and 860 RBI, Bell spent two years with the Arizona Diamondbacks as Bob Melvin's Bench Coach in 2005-06 and three seasons as an advisor for the club during spring training (2007-09).
In 2012, Jay spent the season as the Hitting Coach for the Southern League champion Mobile BayBears, Arizona's Double-A affiliate that was managed by Turner Ward.
A two-time All-Star, Bell retired as a player after appearing in 72 games with the New York Mets in 2003. While playing with Arizona in 2001, Bell will be best-remembered for jumping into Matt Williams' arms after scoring the winning run in Game Seven of the World Series against the New York Yankees. He is also one of five players on Arizona's inaugural roster in 1998 who participated in the 2001 World Series with the D-Backs (also Brian Anderson, David Dellucci, Damian Miller and Williams).
Originally selected by Minnesota in the first round of the 1984 June draft, Bell made his Major League debut with Cleveland in 1986 and homered on the first pitch he saw in his first big league at bat against Hall-of-Famer Bert Blyleven - one year after being traded for Blyleven. He became the 11th player ever to homer on the first big league pitch thrown to him, a feat matched by current Bucco outfielder Starling Marte in 2012.
Bell was acquired by Pittsburgh in March of 1989 and became the Pirates everyday shortstop a year later. In 1106 career games with the Pirates, Bell hit .269 with 78 homers and 423 RBI. He also produced a .282 average in 20 post-season games with Pittsburgh, which included a .414 (12-for-29) average during the 1991 N.L.C.S. against Atlanta. Bell still holds the Pittsburgh club record for most sacrifice bunts in a season (39 in 1990) and led the National League in that category in 1990 and 1991 (30).
Bell's 78 home runs hit as a shortstop in a Pittsburgh uniform rank second all-time behind Hall-of-Famer Arky Vaughan (84) and are 10 ahead of Hall-of-Famer Honus Wagner, who hit 68 during his career as the Pirates shortstop.
In 1999, Jay made the transition from shortstop to second base while setting career highs in home runs (38), RBI (112) and runs (132) with Arizona. For his efforts that season, he was elected to start at second base during the All-Star Game in Boston.
Jay Stuart Bell...Wife's name is Laura...Has three children; daughter Brianna (8/5/91) and sons Brantley (11/16/94) and Brock (3/18/98)...Is a 1984 graduate of Tate High School in Gonzalez, FL, where he led his senior baseball team to the Quad-A State title... Was named the 1993 Dapper Dan Man-of-the-Year, and award given annually since 1936 to a Pittsburgh sports figure in recognition of outstanding achievement on a national level...Was also the 1993 recipient of the Pittsburgh Points of Light Foundation Award for his community service work...Following the 1999 season, he partnered with Tiger Woods in the Pro-Am of the Williams World Challenge at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale...Participated in PirateFest this past December.