Cody Bellinger: Former Dodgers Prospect Michael Busch ‘Running With’ Cubs Opportunity

Michael Busch emerged as a top prospect for the Los Angeles Dodgers, but he was traded to the Chicago Cubs during the offseason due to a roster crunch.

Busch, who can play all around the infield, was blocked by All-Stars at every position. With the presence of Shohei Ohtani, it also would have been impossible for the 26-year-old to get at-bats as the designated hitter.

The Cubs gave Busch a clear path to playing time at first base and he has made the most of his opportunity. He recently tied a franchise record by homering in five consecutive games and is an early favorite for National League Rookie of the Year honors.

Cody Bellinger, who also began his career with the Dodgers, believes Busch has benefited with the change of scenery, via Bob Nightengale of USA Today:

“It was such a tough lineup for him to crack in LA,” Bellinger says, “and now he’s got an opportunity, and he’s running with it.”

Although there was no obvious spot for Busch on the Dodgers at the start of the season, it’s conceivable that he could have eventually supplanted Gavin Lux at second base had the team held on to him. Lux has struggled for most of the year, and Busch’s hot hitting would have been a boon to the bottom third of the lineup.

Busch also could have been an option in left field, but the Dodgers instead decided to re-sign Jason Heyward and bring in Teoscar Hernández.

The former first-round pick nevertheless has no ill will toward the Dodgers and appears to have found a long-term home with the Cubs. Through 20 games, he is batting .309/.385/.618 with three doubles, six home runs and 15 RBI in 78 plate appearances.

Michael Busch was ‘happy’ to hit first home run with Cubs against Dodgers

Busch hit his first home run as a member of the Cubs in an April 5 matchup against the Dodgers at Wrigley Field, which meant a lot to him.

Busch also enjoyed the challenge of facing Bobby Miller and capped off his afternoon with a diving catch at first base to end the game.

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