As you know, Cody Bellinger was named 2019 NL Most Valuable Player on Thursday evening. Now official, the fun stuff begins to trickle out.
Therefore, Los Angeles Dodgers’ head scout Logan White joined MLB Network’s Hot Stove to talk about the prize young player brought up through the organization. While we post the full vidoe your enjoyment below, let’s peel out some of the highlights of the segment with Harold Reynolds and Matt Vasgersian.
First, Reynolds asks White about the process in finding Bellinger (a fourth-round pick) and bringing him to Los Angeles as a prospect.
“First off I would like to thank the area scout, Dustin Yount. He did a great job and you know how the baseball world works. We had several cross-checkers (to verify Bellinger’s talent) and I want to give credit to those guys. Now getting back to your question, I was fortunate enough to see Cody play little league baseball when he was 12. Actually, he played in the Little League World Series and was outstanding. So that was my first look at Cody and I kind of kept an eye on him.”
Next, White tells a really interesting story about the discovery of Bellinger’s competitive gene even as a young player; long before he was a Long Angeles Dodger.
“I had a batting cage in the back yard in Arizona at my home. Then, I would have Cody and Clay come over to hit. We were doing exit velocity back then off the radar gun. I did it so I could find out how competitive Cody was. When he hit off the batting tee, he was like 94 miles per hour off the bat. Then Cody asked me ‘what are some of the best velocities you have had’ and I said I think Matt Kemp was 97 or 98 miles per hour. He wouldn’t quit until he got up to that range as a 17-year old kid. So that was a good sign.”
Finally, White is given very high praise within the scouting industry. He went on to talk about how the Dodgers had Bellinger a lot higher in their rankings then a fourth round pick. Therefore, they didn’t mind giving him a high signing bonus like they did.
Altogether, this was a really interesting segment from start to finish. I could listen to White talk about discovering diamonds in the rough that turn into MVP’s all night long.