Dodgers Most Valuable Player for First Quarter of the Season

Recently put out an article listing out every team’s Most Valuable Player so far. It’s a fairly obvious conclusion that Cody Bellinger was listed for the Dodgers — sorry, should have called out a SPOILER ALERT before typing that.

No doubt Cody is the right call. He’s been doing it all this season… after winning April’s NL Player of the Month in an otherwise historic month, he has taken a bit of a step back in May. However, he never takes a play off, and he’s getting it done on both sides of the ball. Case in point, this rocket:

Again, Cody is absolutely the right call for Dodgers MVP for the first quarter of 2019.

But let’s play fair. Bellinger has been so otherworldly at times that teammates have not had a true opportunity to shine. Cody is the Dodgers superstar now.

So let’s pretend he doesn’t exist.

The Other Dodgers MVP

Now this is a tough situation, because there are 1 or 2 very deserving players, but really, there’s no contest after Sunday afternoon.

Hyun-Jin Ryu has quietly assumed the role of the Dodgers ace this season. Despite a short IL stint for a minor groin strain, he still leads the team in the following:

  • Starts with 8 (tied with Kenta Maeda)
  • Innings pitched with 52.1
  • Strike outs with 54
  • And has allowed only 3 walks while accumulating a 1.72 ERA.

Moreover, he leads the team with 5 wins, which is also good for a 5-way tie atop the NL rankings. Plus he leads baseball with 5 sacrifice hits on the season.

In short, Ryu has been electric.

After posting back to back no-hit bids in May, he’s finally starting to gain some national attention, and could (should) be named the NL Player of the Week (2-0 (incl. CG SO), 17 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 15 K, 1 BB).

5 hits allowed in 17 innings pitched!!

Ryu is also in the middle of a 24 scoreless innings streak.

He is the Dodgers best pitcher. And he is the Dodgers best player outside of Cody Bellinger.

Honorable Mention

Alex Verdugo has done nothing but hit, defend, and play the game the right way this season. After losing AJ Pollock to the IL, his playing time has picked up, and he’s done nothing to slow down. He’s one of the leading rookie hitters in baseball, and he’s one of the more exciting players in the game.

Hence, he deserves an honorable mention.

What are your thoughts?

Written by Clint Pasillas

Clint is the lead editor of Dodgers Nation, and a host and analyst on Dodgers Nation's own Blue Heaven podcast live stream.

He's been writing, blogging, and podcasting Dodgers since about 2008. He was there for Nomar, Greg Maddux, and Blake DeWitt, and he'll be there for Walker Buehler, Alex Verdugo, Dustin May, and any Dodgers of the future.

He's also a sandwich enthusiast, a consummate athlete, and a friend.


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  1. And Ryu has done a better job at keeping the baseball in the yard than the other starters too. He hasn’t put the team in a hole in the 1st inning like some of the other starters have.

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