For a second consecutive season the Los Angeles Dodgers have diverted from promoting one of the organization’s top prospects during September. Last year, they called on Julio Urias in May, and this season the honor went to Cody Bellinger.
Much like Urias, Bellinger was immediately thrown into the fire for his MLB debut. The 21-year-old started in left field and batted eighth Tuesday night against the San Francisco Giants. Bellinger has started in each of the three games he’s been with the Dodgers thus far.
Corey Seager made his MLB debut in September 2015, assumed a full-time role last season, and can relate to facing high expectations. He believes Bellinger’s arrival may provide a spark for the Dodgers, according to Doug Padilla:
“[Bellinger’s arrival] is awesome. Sometimes you need that spark, something new, something refreshing. Hopefully he can give that to us. He’s got the potential to give that to us, so everybody is really excited.”
Los Angeles has gone 2-1 since Bellinger was called up from Triple-A Oklahoma City. Though, it’s not necessarily related to Bellinger — at least directly — as he’s just 1-for-10 with two walks and five strikeouts.
A natural first baseman, Bellinger has exclusively played left field. He’s expected to remain in the outfield, potentially seeing time in center field as well. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said Bellinger will receive plenty of playing time during his time with the club.