The 2021 season will likely go down as the worst in Cody Bellinger’s career. While his 2019 MVP form isn’t something we expect from him on an annual basis, the Dodgers know that Cody isn;t nearly as bad as this season would indicate.
A series of injuries have derailed him from the start, and Cody never found his swing in 2021. The Dodgers just placed him on the injured list again this week, this time with a rib fracture sustained in an outfield collision. But there is still hope that he can be useful to them as the team heads for the postseason.
But MLB experts are already thinking beyond this season for the Dodgers superstar. The Athletic’s Jim Bowden talked about Bellinger this week and what he thinks his future looks like. Bowden made a surprising prediction, and we can’t say that we agree.
I think the Dodgers will trade Bellinger this offseason and use their resources to try to keep Scherzer and Seager instead. I do think Bellinger is salvageable if he commits to returning to the mechanics he used in 2019, when he hit 47 home runs and led the league with 351 total bases. Bellinger is only 26 years old, and the average prime years for major-league players are 26 to 30. If I’m another team, I’m making trade offers the minute the postseason is over.
The Dodgers trading Bellinger when his value has never been lower would make little to absolutely no sense at all. He is also under team control through the 2023 season, which makes even less sense for them to trade him now.
If anything, the Dodgers would hope for a bounceback year in 2022 before even considering moving the outfielder. The only reason it would make sense to move him this offseason would be to create money for Max Scherzer and possibly Corey Seager.
But they’re also the Dodgers. They have the money to retain both of those guys if they want to, even if they keep Bellinger around through 2023. Why roll the dice now and possibly get a minimal return for a former MVP?
What do you think? Do the Dodgers even answer phone calls on Bellinger this offseason? Drop into the comments and let me know what you think.