Indians Bring Back Buddy Bell As Consultant

CLEVELAND (AP) - Buddy Bell, fired earlier this season as manager of the Colorado Rockies, was named a special minor league consultant Thursday by the Cleveland Indians, the team he started his playing career with.

Bell, 50, will assist in the development of Cleveland's minor league players, coaches and managers. He also will scout National League players.

"His presence, knowledge and experience cultivated over 34 years in professional baseball will be an invaluable resource for our minor league players and staff," Indians general manager Mark Shapiro said.

Bell was fired April 26 after the Rockies opened the season 6-16 -- the worst start in their history.

He also managed the Detroit Tigers from 1996-98, and has complied a 345-462 career record.

Bell served as the Indians' infield coach in 1994-95 under manager Mike Hargrove. Current manager Charlie Manuel, who is in the final year of his contract, was the hitting coach on that staff.

Bell was a minor league field coordinator for Cincinnati for almost a year in 1998 before being promoted to the Reds' director of player development.

He began his playing career with the Indians in 1972 and stayed with the club until '78 when he was traded to the Texas Rangers for third baseman Toby Harrah.

Bell also played with the Reds and Houston Astros before retiring in 1989. He was a five-time All-Star and won six consecutive Gold Gloves at third.

Bell's father, Gus, played 14 seasons in the major leagues. His son, David, plays for the San Francisco Giants.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)