The Los Angeles Dodgers have been very patient with Cody Bellinger all season, but it appears the outfielder may be running out of time to correct his struggles.
Bellinger was not in the lineup for Friday’s game against the San Diego Padres, and manager Dave Roberts suggested that it will be the first of several days off for the outfielder. Roberts did not commit to when Bellinger might return to the starting lineup, either.
Dave Roberts just said he's going to give Cody Bellinger (.524 OPS) a few days to work on things. Gavin Lux here and playing left could signal Bellinger's runway is dissipating. Roberts wouldn't commit to when Bellinger is going to be back in the lineup.
— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) September 10, 2021
The Dodgers have Gavin Lux in left field Friday night, and they might be experimenting with other solutions for their playoff run that don’t include Bellinger. The former NL MVP is hitting just .158 with nine home runs on the season, and he has struck out 86 times in 82 games.
Bellinger had to come back from offseason shoulder surgery and suffered another injury early in the season. Those factors may have contributed to his season. He’s still just 26, and he has time and talent on his side to get back to where he was. The Dodgers just can’t wait around for it to happen in 2021 with the playoffs looming.