Los Angeles Dodgers players we're glad to see gone: Cody Bellinger
This one was a tough one, but you know it had to happen. There's simply no way Cody Bellinger, a former MVP Award winner who completely fell off the face of the earth, couldn't be featured in a list like this.
Everything seemed so perfect for Bellinger and the Dodgers through the first three years of his big league career. He hit the ground running after earning his first promotion in 2017, winning the NL Rookie of the Year, making the All-Star Game and even finishing in the top-10 in the MVP voting.
In 2018, he pulled off an increasingly rare feat by playing in all 162 regular season games for the Dodgers. His OPS+ dipped from 143 to 120, but he still hit 25 home runs and drove in 76 runs along the way.
In 2019, he exploded on offense, hitting 47 home runs with 115 RBI and a .305 average in 156 games. He won the NL MVP, made another All-Star Game, won the Silver Slugger and even earned himself a Gold Glove for his outstanding play in center field. After that, the wheels completely fell off.
The COVID-shortened 2020 campaign was the beginning of the end for Bellinger. He was still a productive player, but he dealt with multiple shoulder injuries and the numbers began to decline for him rather quickly after his incredible performance the year prior. In 2021, he played in under 100 games and was 56 percent below league-average at the plate, as evidenced by his OPS+ of 44.
You get the gist, and you know how last year went for the once-promising star. He hit just 19 home runs and managed a .210 average on the year. The Dodgers made the difficult (but not all that difficult) decision to non-tender him at season's end. The Chicago Cubs signed him in hopes of catching lightning in a bottle, but there's a chance that the 2019 Cody Bellinger is gone for good.