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Dodgers News: Cody Bellinger Named Finalist for MVP Award

Well-deserved!

Cody Bellinger emerged as one of the league’s brightest stars in 2019 and has now been named as one of the three finalists for the 2019 National League Most Valuable Player Award.

Bellinger, 24, had a season for the ages. He posted a terrific .305 batting average, 1.035 on-base plus slugging percentage, and 162 wRC+. He also chipped in a fantastic 7.8 WAR for the NL West champion Dodgers.

Along with Bellinger, Milwaukee Brewers’ outfielder Christian Yelich and Washington Nationals’ third baseman Anthony Rendon have been named as finalists for the award.

The NL MVP voting should come down to the wire with the three men’s outputs being within hairs of each other.

Cody Bellinger

Bellinger could be the MVP of the National League depending on how much the voters weight his first half — should be even with his second half — and how much they value defense. Bellinger led all non-catchers in defensive runs saved (DRS) in 2019 with 26 total. He was phenomenal playing right field, center field, and first base. He was so good that he just recently was named the winner of the NL Gold Glove in right field. Bellinger definitely holds his own in comparison to the field and his fellow finalists. He has a real shot at winning this thing.

Christian Yelich

Christian Yelich almost seemed to be the surefire winner of the award until he broke his kneecap and missed a month’s worth of games. Prior to the injury, Yelich posted a terrific slash line of .329/.429/.671 — better marks than Bellinger. Yelich also chipped in 44 homers, 30 stolen bases, and drove in 97 runs. Yelich, unlike Bellinger, did not grade out as a good defender in 2019, posting -1 DRS. Yelich and Bellinger are about neck and neck it seems — both with 7.8 WAR.

Revisit the mid-season “Belli vs Yelli” conversation.

Anthony Rendon

Rendon made a late season push for the MVP award and demonstrated his star-level talent in the World Series, leading the Washington Nationals to their first World Series in franchise history. They say the MVP is a regular season award, so if the voters stick to it, there should not be any recency bias in play. Rendon posted a .312/.412/.598 line with a 154 wRC+ and 7.0 WAR. While he was excellent, his regular season play simply did not match up to Yelich’s or Bellinger’s. He will get votes, but it likely will not be enough to topple the outfielders.

All award winners will be announced next week: MVP, Cy Young and More; Important Upcoming Awards Dates

Written by Daniel Preciado

My name is Daniel Preciado and I am 18 years old. I am a sophomore Sport Analytics major and Cognitive Science and Economics dual minor at Syracuse University. When I am not in New York, I live in Whittier, California --- not too far from Chavez Ravine. I am pretty old-school for being an analytics guy and I will always embrace debate. Also, Chase Utley did absolutely nothing wrong.

6 Comments

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  1. I always look at baseball references’ WAR ratings; and Cody is sgnificantly higher than either Rendon or Yelich 9 to 7.1 to 6.3. That is a big difference. Yelich is a hair better offensively. Cody is way above Yelich defensively. Rendon is a slight bit below both these guys. So to me — Cody is #1

  2. I love Cody but his postseason performances have been disappointing. Hes got a lot of work to do because if the Dodgers have any hopes of winning WS, Cody will have to produce in October.

    • What we learn every postseason is that the whole team has to be apart of it to win it all. That’s the case for every team that wins and especially so for the starting 8 on the field, you need them all and you need atleast 3 starters at their best maybe 4,and the whole bullpen

      • Of course Cody cant win WS by himself. Takes a whole team to win it th at gors without saying. My point is that Cody will have to live up to the MVP chants in October and help lead the team to a WS championship.

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