CHICAGO — Clint Hurdle is searching for a new cleanup hitter. Josh Bell, who has hit there in all 57 of his starts this season, has been removed from that spot in the Pirates' lineup, Hurdle told reporters Saturday morning at Wrigley Field.
Bell will bat sixth with Cubs left-hander Jon Lester on the mound, and Francisco Cervelli will hit cleanup for a second consecutive game, although Hurdle hasn't settled on a permanent replacement for Bell.
Despite Bell's struggles, the change is somewhat of a surprise since Hurdle has repeatedly ruled out moving the 25-year-old first baseman in the order. However, he thought it was necessary considering Bell's recent struggles and those by the Pirates' entire offense.
"Give it a different look, give him a different look, a different time to hit to see if it can help," Hurdle said.