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Twins bench coach Mike Bell takes leave for kidney cancer

Moeller HS grad and brother of Reds manager
Twins Bell Baseball
Posted at 8:59 PM, Feb 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-18 11:38:05-05

MINNEAPOLIS — Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated Mike Bell's high school graduation date.

Minnesota Twins bench coach Mike Bell, brother of Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell, has taken an indefinite leave from the team because of kidney cancer.

The 46-year-old Bell had surgery to remove the growth on Jan. 28, shortly after being diagnosed. He’s been recovering at home with his family in Arizona.

“He’s also very, very optimistic and also very encouraged and waiting for his return to the dugout,” manager Rocco Baldelli told the Associated Press Wednesday. “The situation, it’s obviously serious, but Mike has handled this with great courage.”

Bell was hired prior to the 2020 season to replace Derek Shelton, who departed to become manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Bell is the younger brother of current Reds manager David Bell and the son of longtime major league player and manager Buddy Bell. A 1993 Moeller High School graduate, Bell also played 19 games for the Reds in his only big league experience.

Baldelli said he won’t make any immediate changes to the coaching staff. The Twins have their first official workout for pitchers and catchers on Friday at spring training in Fort Myers, Florida, with the first full-squad workout following four days later.