Dodgers Team News

Dodgers News: Doc Answers Whether or Not MVP Cody Bellinger Will Ever Return

One of the big storylines so far this Dodgers season has been a few lineup mainstays struggling to find it at the plate. Max Muncy and Justin Turner headline a grouping of LA All-Stars who have yet to find their grove offensively. But that group also includes 2019 NL MVP Cody Bellinger.

Since the start of the 2020 season, Bellinger owns a .649 OPS and a .200 batting average. His 25.2% strikeout is second behind Chris Taylor (29.5%). Last season was particularly dreadful as Cody was working his way back from offseason shoulder surgery and suffered a significant leg injury that caused him to miss 46 games in April and May.

For months and months, Cody’s precipitous drop in offensive production from his MVP season has been a constant topic for Dodgers fans.

In a recent appearance on The Show podcast, manager Dave Roberts answered whether or not he believes Cody will ever get back to MVP form.

“To win a MVP, everything’s gotta lineup –  unless your Mike Trout. It was a special year, 2019, for Cody, is he ever going to get to that caliber? Only time will tell.”

Roberts mentioned that he’s had plenty of dialogue with Cody about trying to rediscover his All-Star form. Doc believes some of it may be accepting that chasing that 2019 season might not be the best approach for Bellinger.

“I’ve had many conversation with Cody, we have to find a way to get past that and deal in the now. Understand the player you are right now.”

Lastly, Roberts outlined what type of player Cody needs to be this year to get back to contributing at a high level at the plate.

“If Cody is of the mind to be an on-base machine, a run producer, a doubles machine, I think he can get back to being as productive a player as he would hope to be which would considerably make us a much better ball club.”

Bellinger is still a quality defender and currently ranks in the top half of the league in defensive runs saved for everyday center fielders (4). 

He hasn’t been the offensive black hole he was last year at the plate, but as Roberts notes, he needs to find a way to get back to consistently getting on base.

As for ever getting back to MVP level, only time will tell.

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Eric Eulau

Born and raised in Ventura, not "Ven-CH-ura", California. Favorite Dodger Stadium food is the old school chocolate malt with the wooden spoon. Host of the Dodgers Nation 3 Up, 3 Down Podcast.

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