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May 29, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Home plate umpire Wally Bell (left) talks to Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle (13) concerning a play in the outfield against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning at PNC Park. (Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports)

Veteran MLB umpire Wally Bell dies of heart attack

The baseball world was dealt a shocking blow on Monday as veteran umpire Wally Bell died of a heart attack at the age of 48.

Bell, who had open heart surgery in 1999, spent 21 years in the majors, working one World Series (2006), four LCSs (2000, 2001, 2005, 2010), six LDSs (1998, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2012) and two All-Star games (1997, 2000). He also worked the 2013 World Baseball Classic Championship Round in San Francisco.

Bell began his career in the majors in 1993 and noted that his proudest moment as an umpire came when he returned from that open heart surgery.

He had just finished working the Pirates-Cardinals NLDS series last week, working behind the plate in Game 2.

According to WFMJ in Youngstown, Ohio, Bell leaves behind two children, two brothers and a sister.

Tags: Baseball MLB

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