The Los Angeles Dodgers lost their fifth straight game and eighth in their last nine on Tuesday night, falling 4-2 in the series opener against the Miami Marlins.
The Dodgers once again struggled at the plate, particularly with runners in scoring position, going 0-for-7 in those situations and stranding six. One of their two runs came on a solo home run off the bat of Cody Bellinger in the ninth inning.
Bellinger has been struggling a bit at the plate as of late, so he said that he has been working on trying to slow the game down to get out of it, via Glenn Sattell of MLB.com:
“It’s been a while since I’ve hit one to center like that. Just trying to slow everything down at the plate,” said Bellinger, who is as puzzled about the Dodgers’ season so far as anyone. “It’s crazy that we’re losing, but the feeling in the clubhouse is we’re still fine.”
Going into play Tuesday, Bellinger was 3-for-20 (.150 batting average) in his last five games, striking out in half of those at-bats.
Overall on the season, while Bellinger has lacked the power surge that he had in 2017, he has still been a productive overall hitter. He hit .269/.326/.474 with six home runs, 26 runs scored and 19 RBI through 41 games.
Additionally, Bellinger’s 23.83 percent strikeout rate is lower than the 26.64 percent he posted in 2017. So while it may look like Bellinger has regressed at the plate after his record-breaking rookie season, that isn’t necessarily the case.
Bellinger is batting just .238 with runners in scoring position though, which both he and the rest of his teammates will need to fix if they want to start winning more games.