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Dodgers: Cody Bellinger Could Be the Odd Man Out Once Trea Turner is Acivated

Not good for Cody.



The Dodgers have some pretty big decisions coming up this week. Not only do they need to sort of figure out things in their location, but they also seem to have a glut of talent this coming weekend against the Angels. 

The hope is that recently acquired Trea Turner is set to join the team this week. And while it’s not known when he will be activated and play, they will need to make a roster move for him eventually. That particular part might be the easier of their decisions. 

But Turner also presents the team with questions marks around the diamond. Corey Seager is fairly entrenched at shortstop and it doesn’t sound like the Dodgers want to change that But Dave Roberts noted to media this week that there was going to be a lot of movement. (via OC Register)

I think it’s going to be a whole group of players making sacrifices. That’s how I’ll start. There are going to be days where I’m just going to use off days and workload as a way to get other guys in there. I think pretty much most players are going to be affected.

Given the way everyone is hitting on the year, it’s difficult to imagine that the Dodgers would continue to give Cody Bellinger daily starts. He’s slashing .168/.267/.291 and hasn’t been any better recently. Guys like AJ Pollock and Chris Taylor just cannot miss time with how they’ve both played. 

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That would mean Bellinger is the odd-man out with an outfield likely consisting of Chris Taylor, AJ Pollock, and Mookie Betts. They haven’t given up on him and he will still get starts. But it would be very difficult to justify starting him regularly over better bats. Regardless of the defense. 

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. I don’t think the comment “and hasn’t been any better recently” is accurate but, regardless, nine guys for eight positions is not a bad thing. Plenty of rest during the dog days. Beatty and Pujois pinch hit and Lux and McKinstry wait until next year.

        • 4 for 12…and only 1 of the 4 was a solid hit for a double…the other 3 were weak shallow and infield hits…the guy has been bad for a couple of years…he should be sent down.

          • Good things happen when you put the bat on the ball; He was flailing at the ball while striking out nearly every at bat and now he’s not (He went 1 for 2 last night without a SO.) Moreover, he wasn’t bad last year (OPS+ 113 with 12 HRs); he was just ordinary after an MVP season (like Christian Yelich.)
            He’s been real bad for the Dodgers at the plate this year but has been better in last week and that’s all I asserted. Most here – yourself included – are piling on a player returning from a serious shoulder because he’s been forced to play before he’s ready. Who would you send him down for – Luke Raley?

  2. “Supplanted” means replaced. Are you saying that Seager has been “replaced” at shortstop? Anyway, the Dodgers can’t afford to keep running someone out there who is hitting .160 this season. Maybe it’s time for Bellinger to find a “nagging” injury like the pitchers do when the Dodgers want to put them on ice for a while.

  3. Memo to Roberts: as Brook states here, it would very difficult to justify keeping Bellinger in starting lineup over guys like CT3 and or Pollock. IDK, but perhaps he’s been told to do so from above in FO. Look, it’s quite simple. Ya can’t keep starting Bellinger and his .168 BA over others just because of defense. This team has been so inconsistent offensively all year and if Roberts cares at all about actually winning, then the best lineup needs to be in there on a DAILY BASIS. That means CT3, Pollock, and of course Trea Turner must be in starting lineup ahead of Cody, no ifs ands or buts.

  4. He should have been sent down to Oklahoma City long ago to work on his swing. I know he’s good defensively, but throw him a high fast ball and he can’t help himself. He’s an easy out right now.

    • Don’t think sending him to OKC is the right call, though something needs to be done. I would send him to Arizona with our hitting coaches and just work on his stance and approach. On MLB channel this morning Dero showed comparison of 2019 and now. Bat position is clearly different, left foot was turned in toward pitcher in 2019, not now, and he was FURTHER from the plate. I made mention of this previously in a post, but I think he should look at film of Bryce Harper and another comment was posted yesterday about Rizzo who stands at least as close to the plate as Cody. Harper’s first movement is to move forward before he opens up to clear his hips. Cody immediately opens up and leaves him unable to anything hard that is either up or away. Cody right now can not get on top of ball. If he continues with his violent uppercut and falling to one knee he is not going to get better, but worse. There is nothing wrong with a left center to right center approach and a level to slightly uppercut swing, not his current swing approach. In case anyone is wondering why my talking about Harper, I live in Pa. and see him every day. He swings hard, but is under considerably more control than Cody’s.

    • My fear is that Roberts may alienate some players with his play of favoritism towards Bellinger if he continues to start daily over those more worthy of the playing time. WSS.

  5. I’m tired of reading about Billenger and his poor mechanics.Start the process on giving him a complete overhaul because tinkering won’t do anything.

  6. Players need to earn playing time. Trea
    Turner will either be starting 6 days a week or Roberts needs to hit the road. Turner is just as fast as Bellinger and played Center some as a Rookie. Betts can Play 2nd base to keep Taylor and Pollock in the lineup, with Bellinger sent to OKC until he relearns to hit. Right now he is an anchor around the lineup’s neck, and .160 hitters don’t belong anywhere in MLB, especially Bellinger, who looks as overmatched as a Little Leaguer playing against College kids. Turner could also play second or third, but I personally would play him at Shortstop and move Seager to second to keep Turner happy since Cory probably won’t re-sign here anyway. Turner needs to be signed to an extension ASAP. Lux doesn’t look like he’s gonna make it, although I hope I’m wrong.

  7. Bellinger must finally realize that his crowding the dish complete straight up stance is making him an automatic out almost every AB. I just wonder if he indeed refuses to make those adjustments here. It’s been noted on a few occasions how he’s missing pitches up and over middle of plate with regularity.

  8. The FO. should be involved to send Cody Bellinger to OKC. The Dodgers can’t afford to have Bellinger in the lineup in this stretch run.
    It is hard enough to catch the Giants now with
    4 games behind. If the Dodgers can make a trade Bellinger to another team then Do it.

    • The trading deadline has come and gone and there’s no more August waiver deal to be had. As far as a roster move for when Trea is activated, Reks should be sent out and not McKinney. That’s because I realize Dodgers won’t send Bellinger out in this case.

  9. I mentioned last season that Bellinger will fall because of his swing, stance, and approach to hitting. I was told I don’t know what I’m talking about because I’m just a commenter on websites. Bellinger needs to move back off the plate about 6 inches, step forward with his right leg instead of into the bucket, bend the knees some, and he needs to concentrate on contact and not homers. If not, he’ll just continue to pop up, hit dribblers down to 1st base, or strike out.

    • I agree with all you said and I would add this. Bellinger has a “head” problem. You can see it when he comes to bat, hesitant, scared. Either you can hit or not. He has not really been good for a couple of years now. Either he gets “it” or not it is up to him. I think he is done.

  10. I’ve thought, until the last couple of days, Bellinger should stay in the line up and he would gradually regain his stroke. Hasn’t happened, and time is starting to become all important. There are times injuries derail an entire season, and the player never does get back on track. If Bellinger was going to hit, I think he would have done it by now. We need consistent production and it’s time to stop fooling around and start hitting on all cylinders. Maybe I’m wrong, that would be better for us, but we need more now than Cody has been producing.

  11. Big Cody Bellinger fan here. That said, we all have had enough time to realize the Big Dave is a players manager. If you are one of the privileged one’s, you are going to get more than your fair share of chances, even if you shouldn’t. I will say again, this unmotivated, semi-priveleged group of players that assume they will have a parade at the end of the year, are delusional. The philosophy needs to change and that starts at the top with Roberts. The hitting coaches too…stop this walk first mentality and get after hitting the ball hard. Be the intimidator, not the intimidated.

  12. Don’t worry, this club will have the pampered one on the the IL as soon as T Turner is activated.
    LA is the champion of IL manipulation

  13. I can’t help but think that friggin’ rigid stance he continues to maintain is a hindrance. He looks like a rigid scarecrow on stilts out there – which makes his strike zone huge for opposing pitchers and allows them to pitch both high, low, inside and outside.By the time he swings while trying to lower his body, he is consistently late or missing the pitch by a wide margin. I have read that he has adjusted his stance several times, but, jeez, can’t the batting coach get him to limber up a bit, bend his knees even a tad, or at least assume a lower body position by bending his back forward.

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