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Bell keeps on delivering saves for the Padres

The Sports Xchange
 
Bell keeps on delivering saves for the Padres · Roster Report · Notes, Quotes
 

Heath Bell says he doesn't put great significance in his streak of converting 38 straight save opportunities, going back to last May 25.

The streak is the longest active streak in the major leagues.

It is also the second-longest in Padres history.

Trevor Hoffman holds the Padres' record with 41 straight successfully converted saves from Aug. 24,1997, to July 25, 1998. He also had a 38-save streak from April 30-Sept. 23, 2005.

But Bell said he doesn't put stock the "straight" number as much as the "percentage."

"The biggest thing is consistency over time," said Bell. "In my mind, right now my streak is one. Tomorrow it will be zero again. All I'll have is the four saves on the season."

Bell said he's experiencing an unusual start to the season, which he believes can be traced back to the "slight" strain in his left calf, suffered on the second day of spring training.

"Because of the calf, I didn't work on my pitching until midway through spring training," said Bell. "Then I didn't get into my normal running drills until the final week.

"My arm is fine. My mechanics are bad. My fastball has been elevated. But for some reason, right now I'm getting more ground balls than strikeouts and flyouts. I'm not worried about it. The ball is slowly coming down. Nothing I do has ever made sense. You are supposed to have a long stride to create velocity. I don't have a long stride, but the velocity is there."

As for working with runners on base, said Bell: "I get nastier when there are runners on, but I don't like operating that way."

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