SAN FRANCISCO -- When Josh Bell was called up from Triple-A Reno on May 21, D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said that the team planned on giving him the majority of the playing time at third base with Ryan Roberts moving over to more of a utility role.
In the last seven games, however, Bell has started just three of them, though he was in the lineup Tuesday.
What happened? Partially it was the fact that Roberts took some advice from Gibson to heart and started playing better, and it was also the realization on Gibson's part that there were still some things that Bell needed to work on.
"Things change, you try to evaluate and you try to do what's best for the team," Gibson said. "I just felt Ryno was going in a good direction and I wanted him to go down that direction. He did what we asked him to do and he's played very well."
Meanwhile, Bell has been out working earlier defensively with infield coach Matt Williams, who won four Gold Gloves as a third baseman during his playing career.
Williams has worked with Bell on his footwork, how the D-backs position themselves in certain situations and how to approach balls.
"We wanted to give Josh some work on some things as well," Gibson said. "He's been working, getting him a little more comfortable, a little more acclimated. I think it's a lot for him, too. He came up here, new team, new organization. Like anybody he wanted to impress and sometimes you just kind of, like, slow down and catch your breath and make sure we all understand how we're going to do things and how we integrate into the system. [I] probably didn't plan on sitting him out that long."