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Bell hopes to dodge boo birds at former home

SAN DIEGO -- D-backs reliever Heath Bell loved pitching in San Diego from 2007-11.

If he sees action for the D-backs this weekend, he is hoping for a better reception than he got in 2012 when he returned as a member of the Miami Marlins.

"Last year I got booed," he said.

Bell saved 134 games during his time with the Padres and had hoped to finish his career there. He thinks the reason he was booed was because fans thought he turned down a lucrative offer from the Padres to sign with the Marlins.

"Probably because in the paper they said [the Padres] offered me like three years, $21 million, and I left for more money in Miami," Bell said. "But I was never offered that."

After a miserable year in Miami, Bell was dealt to the D-backs this past offseason with two years left on his contract.

"I'm hoping to finish my career as a Diamondback right now, past this contract that I have now," he said. "When I find someplace I really like, especially like the Diamondbacks, I want to stay here for a long time."

Whether that will happen remains to be seen, but Bell has a more immediate desire.

"I'm hoping not to be booed this year," he said.

Steve Gilbert is a reporter for Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.
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