1 Los Angeles Dodgers player who will be hurt by Cody Bellinger’s return

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 29: Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - MAY 29: Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images) /

The Los Angeles Dodgers have been a solid team this year, but they are far from the unstoppable juggernaut that everyone thought would run away with the division again.

They could get back to those lofty heights now that Cody Bellinger is back in the lineup and ready to do some major damage.

Bellinger did regress from the MVP form he showed in 2019, and he only tallied four hits in 23 at-bats this season before landing on the IL.

Regardless, he is still one of the game’s premier power threats and best defensive outfielders, and putting that game-changer back into the lineup could be the meal ticket that helps turn the Dodgers around.

Bellinger, should he come anywhere close to his 2019 form, will be able to take this Dodgers lineup into the stratosphere, as he and the slew of talented outfielders he will play alongside make up arguably the best combination in the game.

With Bellinger and Zach McKinstry both off of the injures list, Mookie Betts still preserving his status as one of the best in the game, and the invaluable Chris Taylor moving around the diamond, the Dodgers’ new-look outfield is ready to kick some tail.

This is not good news for injured veteran AJ Pollock.

Dodgers: Cody Bellinger coming back is bad news for AJ Pollock.

Pollock, who has spent the last three seasons in LA after seven years with the Arizona Diamondbacks, has smashed 35 home runs in 173 games as a Dodger, proving that his power is getting better with age. However, his stint on the IL might relegate him to bench duty in the near future.

Bellinger and Betts are going to start as many games as possible, so that’s two of the three outfield boxes checked. Taylor’s bat has been so effective that you can’t take it out of the lineup, and the combination of McKinstry and Matt Beatty offers Dave Roberts a younger alternative to the older Pollock.

Pollock will get his at-bats, as there is plenty about his style of play and experience that will appeal to Roberts. However, unless one of the youngsters cools off dramatically and Roberts is willing to stick Taylor in the infield more, Pollock might’ve accidentally seen his starting spot vacated.

Having this many good outfielders is the definition of a good problem to have, but given how LA has been very proactive with working younger players into the starting lineup, we might see less of Pollock than we did earlier in the year.