Twins Exec Jerry Bell Scaling Back, Not Retiring

Bell plans to reduce his hours by about 50 percent and shift the focus of his projects, but he'll still work very closely with the team, according to a Twins spokesman.

A day after longtime Minnesota Twins executive Jerry Bell announced his retirement, a team spokesman said that Bell isn't altogether cutting ties with the Twins.

While Bell will reduce his hours to part-time and focus on some different projects, he'll still grace the halls of the Twins' corporate office and work closely with the team, Kevin Smith told Twin Cities Business on Friday.

Bell became the team's third president in 1987 and remained in that position until current President Dave St. Peter succeeded him in 2002. At that time, Bell became president of Twins Sports, Inc., and devoted the bulk of his time and efforts to making Target Field into a reality.

In fact, Bell was the face of the Twins in front of countless legislative committee hearings and in negotiations with public and private stakeholders-and he is credited with almost single-handedly keeping the new-stadium vision alive through years of controversy and legislative defeats.

Now that the new stadium is up and running, “the timing is good” for Bell, 69, to get out of the daily grind, Smith said. Going forward, he'll scale back his hours by about 50 percent and focus on special projects “as assigned by ownership.”

Among those projects are working to spruce up the Twins training facility in Fort Myers, Florida, and tracking the development in the area surrounding Target Field, Smith said.

With Bell turning 70 this year, it's “time to take it easy a little bit,” Smith said. But retiring-as in, no longer working with the team? That's a ways off.

“Let's put it this way: Nobody's fighting over his office because he's not giving it up,” Smith said.