Indeed, yesterday we took the time to show you comparisons between the Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger and Mike Trout. Now, there are comparisons being drawn to a slightly bigger name from the game’s past.
Today our friend Mike Petriello checks in from over at MLB.com. Furthermore, Peteriello tells us that Bellinger is in the midst of the greatest season of all time. You read that correctly. Thus far, the season that Bellinger is having is on pace to top Babe Ruth’s 1921 season as the greatest ever in terms of Wins Above Replacement(WAR).
OK, let's do this. Cody Bellinger has 5.4 WAR (b-ref version), one-third of the way through the year.
He's on pace to get to 16 WAR, which would top 1921 Babe Ruth for best ever.
He's not going to get there. But where *is* he going to get to?https://t.co/iFC4iBmTxa
— Mike Petriello (@mike_petriello) May 30, 2019
Petriello touches on how we arrived at this fate with the Dodgers’ right fielder.
If it feels like we talk about “best ever this,” or “most historic that” a lot these days, well, maybe we do, and maybe we should, because we’re witnessing what is almost certainly the most talented group of baseball players in baseball history. But in Bellinger’s case, it’s deserved, because this start — .382/.469/.770, a .503 wOBA in 228 plate appearances through Tuesday’s games — is truly something else.
Dating back to the dawn of the live-ball era in 1920, there have been nearly 10,500 player seasons where a hitter has collected at least 220 plate appearances through the end of June. Of all of those seasons, only 26 have gotten off to a better batting start than Bellinger’s, based on wOBA.
And, wow I don’t know what to say next. I’ll start by saying what we are witnessing is not normal, at least with my going back 30 years in my own memory bank. Therefore, if you are one of those people feeling like we are writing about Bellinger a lot, there’s a reason.
Petriello goes on to tell us that Bellinger is on pace for a 16.2 WAR season, which would top Ruth’s 1921 record of 14.1 by a significant margin. In this case- Petriello says that two months is hard to maintain this level of play, and six months is next to impossible.
While Petriello states that he doesn’t believe Bellinger maintains this pace, he goes into why Bellinger could have a historic season. A highly-decreased strikeout rate, piling up outfield assists with abundance, and hitting more fly balls are all responsible for what you’re seeing.
Certainly, Bellinger is treating everyone to spectacular baseball. Without question and at the very least, this could be one of the greatest seasons in Los Angeles Dodgers season history. We are thankful for having Petriello break it down a little further for us and taking notice.
Now, how would you all feel about Bellinger being on the cover of Sports Illustrated? It’s very possible that this is coming, so brace yourselves!