The Pirates took a huge risk drafting Bell, with huge upside if he signs.
The Pittsburgh Pirates made a huge splash in the second round for the second year in a row, selecting outfielder Josh Bell with the 61st overall pick. Bell was rated the 15th best prospect by Baseball America, but fell to the second round. The reason he fell is because he sent a letter to all of the teams telling them not to draft him. He insists that he is honoring his commitment to the University of Texas. However, he is being advised by Scott Boras, which raises questions about his true intentions. That's especially the case when considering that we’re getting the usual “signability” lines, such as "a college education is important to his family", and "his mother is a professor". There is some speculation that it could take up to $6.5 M to sign Bell, which for comparison, is the same that the Pirates paid Jameson Taillon in 2010.
There is a reason the Pirates took a risk on Bell. He's a switch hit...
Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.