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Prospect Notebook: Josh Bell Has Been Working Out at IMG Academy

Mark Olson/
Josh Bell trained at IMG Academy this off-season

The 2012 season was supposed to be the first full pro season for top outfield prospect Josh Bell. Instead, the outfielder went down early in the season with a knee injury. After undergoing MCL surgery, he was expected back by August. Some swelling in the knee held him out longer, causing him to miss the remainder of the season, as well as the instructional league games. The outfielder underwent Platelet Rich Plasma therapy to speed up his recovery, which finally allowed him to get back on the field.

“It’s cool what technology can do for you. It’s definitely different. I had never heard of it before, but I was glad I could get it done,” Bell said of the procedure. “It definitely sped up the healing process for me. I got to the point where everything was kind of stagnant for a little bit, so it sped things back up and now I’m good to go.”

His knee is totally cleared now. The outfielder started hitting again off and on during instructs, and started everyday work in early December. He has been out on the field for the last two months, working at the IMG Academy with Andrew McCutchen, Pedro Alvarez, and Neil Walker.

“It was awesome,” Bell said of the experience. “IMG is an awesome facility. They have all the bells and whistles. Push you hard everyday. It was cool being out there with Andrew McCutchen, Pedro Alvarez, and Neil Walker. Just seeing what they do, how they go about their day, and learning from them.”

Bell worked with the major leaguers doing speed workouts, baseball workouts, strength training, and vision work. He also got some words of wisdom from the group.

The top prospect was out on the field today taking batting practice, and his swing still looked good (video below). I spoke with him at the end of the day and he mentioned that he was able to add some muscle weight while he was hurt, getting up to 240 pounds at the end of last year (he was listed at 195 when drafted).

“I guess one advantage of getting hurt, if there are any, is that I could put on some weight last year, and I feel like the ball’s popping off a little better this year,” Bell said of the added weight.