Bell reflects on All-Star slide

Bell reflects on All-Star slide

Bell reflects on All-Star slide
SAN DIEGO -- Watching Heath Bell burst onto the field in full sprint at the All-Star Game was a perfect representation of what he brings to Padres games when he pitches.

The slide was a perfect representation of him.

"As me closing, I never raise my hands to the sky -- not for the Lord -- but I never go like this," Bell said extending his arms upward and outward, as he would if he were heaping praise on himself. "I don't do anything to kind of like, 'Look at me, look at me, look at me.' Never have.

"I tried to do something fun. ... I'm going to go out there and just be me. I think on the national stage, people learned who Heath Bell is: He's just a guy who wants to have a good time and have fun. But I'm also serious. When you give me the ball, I'm serious."

At that time, Bell didn't have the ball in his hand. When he did, he got the one batter he faced out.

Since the slide, which Bell concocted with the San Diego bullpen prior to the All-Star Game, Bell has received loads of positive feedback from fans, but also his teammates.

"The whole team was busting up laughing," Bell said.

And that includes manager Bud Black.

"I was down at some friends' house ... and they said, 'Hey, Heath's coming in the game,'" Black said. "So I came out from outside and poked in and watched him run in, and I saw him slide. I was laughing like [Pablo] Sandoval was laughing. Even [Giants manager Bruce] Bochy had a smile."

Of course, Black's laugh probably started a half-second after everyone else's -- once Bell got back up.

But Bell, who said he's gotten practically no negative feedback on the slide, accomplished what he wanted to. He added some classic to the Midsummer Classic.

"The All-Star Game is an exhibition game," Bell said. "It does mean stuff for the World Series, but it is an exhibition game. You're out there to have fun and have a good time and put on a good show for the fans. I wanted to put on a really good show.

"I almost jumped in the pool, but I was wired [with a microphone] so I didn't think that would go over very well."