Bell passes on UT offer to sign with Rangers

Chad Bell’s collegiate baseball career is finished.

The former South-Doyle High School and Walters State standout signed Thursday night with the Texas Rangers, ending two months of suspense on whether the left-handed pitcher would turn pro or continue his college career with Tennessee.

Bell flew from Massachusetts to Arlington, Texas, on Thursday morning, according to a Walters State release.

“We were in the championship series in the Cape Cod League, and after we were eliminated, I was on a plane flying to Texas the next day,” Bell said in the release. “This was something I waited over a month and a half to see if it would happen, and it’s a relief to get it done.”

Had Bell not turned pro, he would have taken Tennessee’s scholarship offer and continued his college career with the Vols after spending two years at Walters State.

Bell reports to the Rangers’ fall instructional camp in Surprise, Ariz., in three weeks. He was selected in the 14th round.

Had Bell opted for Tennessee, he would have started fall semester classes next Wednesday.

UT coach Todd Raleigh did not immediately return calls seeking comment Thursday night.

Bell finished the Cape Cod League with a 1.51 ERA. He allowed 13 runs, nine earned, in 53 2/3 innings and pitched a no-hitter.

“It was a long summer, but it was also one of the most rewarding summers that I’ve ever had on the baseball field,” Bell said. “The Rangers had been up here to watch me pitch just about every time I threw, and I couldn’t have asked for a better time to have my best season.”

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Comments » 9

stayingorange writes:

Does Raleigh ever return phone calls - last I remember reading he only sent text messages.

doh writes:

another example of a local kid who does good and did not attend UT. its a shame our baseball program has problems evaluating homegrown talent.

bryan14 writes:

Let's see what players attend the 1st day of class. When kids opt to play professional baseball instead of attending the University of Tennessee it gives the Vols staff another excuse as to why they cannot win games in the Spring. Will we have another baseball staff in Knoxville this time next year?

Hickmc writes:

This wasn't a Raleigh miss it was a Delmonico miss. There was like 8 kids from that South-Doyle team signed to play ball with other schools and the only one that ended up at Tennessee Was Cody Haun and because of Delmonico he took the scenic route. He was originally committed to Arkansas because Delmonico didn't recruit him.

N2Motorsports writes:

in response to doh:

another example of a local kid who does good and did not attend UT. its a shame our baseball program has problems evaluating homegrown talent.

Sounds like they evaluated him correctly. He just chose a different route.

RoadTrip writes:

During the broadcast of the Smokies game last night the ML scout they interviewed said that 2 out of 3 signees he goes after for the ML teams are from college now. He said the colleges are getting smarter about recruiting and coaching up the players to get them ready for pro ball. He expected the trend to continue and grow even more so in the future.

So if the bigs are looking to colleges more for their training and drafting, it would seem to me that the Vol program would be spending much of their non-season time helping the high schools in developing programs and reviewing local/regional prospects. In Chad's case blame Delmonico. In Kyle Koenemann of Seymour HS/WSCC case blame Raleigh. Per Kyle, a diehard UT fan, Raleigh said he did not have the "body" type he was after. Excuse me - he is the same guy that is the career HR leader for WSCC (not Cody) that LSU and Vandy went full bore after with LSU winning his services. We then look at the KIL all star selections for this year and none of them are committed to UT. Vandy, MTSU, ETSU, Louisville, Ole Miss - no UT.

So of course he will not return calls to comment.

easttnvol21 writes:

And the merry go round continues---really, who would want to play for Raleigh----unless a kid simply wants to go to UT and it has been his dream to play ball there, why would they committ???? After many kids get there they quickly find out it was a mistake. All you need to do is talk to them ---I have arrived at the conclusion that no one in the athletic dept really cares about baseball. This is a pitiful representation of the university and SEC baseball.

olevole writes:

We will miss Chad. He is a class kid. Delmonico should not be totally blamed for not getting him since he did not fully develop until late in high school. Best of luck to him with the Nolan Ryan's Rangers where he will be treated like a professional and act like one.

He wont miss the "Raleigh treatment." That's for sure.

Vol4ever_1 writes:

Congrats to Chad!
Hope Morgado will be able to stick on board. Hopefully he wants to. It would really stink if he didn't sign but didn't want to return. I hope the new guy can help CTR with the handling of the pitchers. Forsythe will be a junior, he could call the game and there will be an instant improvement.
Good luck to Brian and Kentrail.
On a good note, rumor has it that CTR has seen ""Anger Management" 8 times this summer.

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