Joshua Evan Bell (born August 14, 1992) is an American professional baseball first baseman for the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball (MLB). He has also played in MLB for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Bell made his MLB debut in 2016.
Bell attended Jesuit College Preparatory School of Dallas and was selected by the Pirates in the second round of the 2011 MLB draft. Bell received a $5 million signing bonus, a record for a player outside the first round, to bypass his college baseball scholarship to the University of Texas at Austin. He played in MLB for the Pirates from 2016 through 2020, and was an All-Star in 2019. After the 2020 season, the Pirates traded Bell to the Nationals.
The Pirates assigned Bell to work out with the State College Spikes, but as the season was ending, he did not appear in a game with the Spikes in 2011. Bell participated in the Pirates’ fall, instructional league. Bell was ranked the 69th best prospect in baseball by MLB.com before the 2012 season.
On December 24, 2020, the Pirates traded Bell to the Washington Nationals in exchange for Wil Crowe and Eddy Yean. Bell and the Nationals agreed to a $6.35 million salary for the 2021 season, avoiding salary arbitration. On April 20, 2021, Bell hit his first home run with the Nationals. He finished the 2021 season batting .261/.347/.476 with 27 home runs and 88 RBIs in 144 games.
Josh Bell signed a 1 year / $10,000,000 contract with the Washington Nationals, including $10,000,000 guaranteed, and an annual average salary of $10,000,000. In 2022, Bell will earn a base salary of $10,000,000, while carrying a total salary of $10,000,000.