While Los Angeles Dodgers’ outfielder Cody Bellinger was on track for 50-plus home runs for a good part of 2019, he tailed off and finished with a superb 47. Still, the pursuit of Shawn Green’s franchise record 49 will remain in 2020. And if a player can get to 49, he can certainly make a run at the magical number 50.
It’s hard to believe that no Dodgers player has ever hit 50, given some of the phenomenal names who have played for the organization. However, MLB.com’s Will Leitch says that Bellinger is the guy if it’s going to happen in the current group of Dodgers. Recently he writes about every team in baseball’s potential home run champion, with Bellinger being the Dodgers’ obvious choice.
While it was just a short snippet, I really like what the national writer notes about Bellinger’s swing.
Dodgers: Cody Bellinger, OF: The swing feels like it was genetically engineered to hit 50.
Undeniably, Bellinger has the best left-handed stroke I have seen since Ken Griffey Jr., which is paying him a dubious compliment. Griffey Jr. finished his career with 630 career home runs, and was one of the most prolific natural power hitters of a generation.
Just three seasons in, Bellinger has an astounding 111 home runs. You may recall a recent segment in which Shawn Green broke down Bellinger’s swing on SportsNet LA, telling us all how Bellinger generates those beautiful arching parabolas that land in the seats.
That said, ‘genetically engineered to hit 50’ has a lot simpler and nicer ring to it. And I agree with Leitch – while many following the Dodgers say Bellinger will never have a year like 2019 again – I think there is a good possibility he finds his way to a 50 home run season before his career is over.
Finally, that’s what is exciting about Bellinger. To have a player on the roster who could lead baseball in home runs is one thing to be excited about heading into 2020.