The fallen MVPs began to stretch their revival. Christian Yelich (Milwaukee) and Cody Bellinger (Chicago Cubs) succeeded in rebounding this season after years of sluggishness.
Yelich and Bellinger were the best players in the major leagues just a few years ago. Yelich won the National League MVP in 2018 and Bellinger in 2019 when he was with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The two competed fiercely for the MVP that year until Yelich was injured at the end of the 2019 season due to a knee injury sustained by a foul hit.
However, the two collapsed like ghosts from 2020. That year, when the league door opened belatedly in July due to Corona 19, Yelich recorded a batting average of 0.205 and an OPS of 0.785 in 58 games. Bellinger was also sluggish with a batting average of 0.235 and an OPS of 0.788. In the previous season, Yelich had a batting average of 0.329 and an OPS of 1.100, and Bellinger had a batting average of 0.305 and an OPS of 1.035.
Even after that, they never regained their former skills. Yelich, who hit 44 homers in the 2019 season, only hit 35 homers in three seasons until last year. Bellinger, who was named MVP in 2019 with 47 home runs, also had just 41 home run totals over the three years.
Yelich signed a 9-year, $215 million contract extension for the 2020 season. Right after that, he suffered from extreme sluggishness. He was ridiculed for another ‘eating and running’ that will remain in MLB history. Bellinger, who was said to be the Dodgers’ ‘present and future’, was released after last season after continued sluggishness.
This season is different. So far on the 16th (Korean time), Yelich’s OPS was 0.829, and Bellinger’s OPS was 0.893. The wRC+ (adjusted goal production capacity), a relative evaluation based on 100, is 126 for Yelich and 138 for Bellinger. Compared to the MVP days, it is still inferior, but considering the sluggish past 3 years, the rebound is clear.
Both men tweaked their batting stances to revive. Since last year, Yelich has ditched the leg kick and has been hitting the ‘toe tap’, which involves lightly lifting and stepping only on his heel. Bellinger also lowered his characteristic upright batting stance. It is evaluated that he is swinging more flexibly while leaning slightly toward the pitcher.메이저토토사이트
The impact of shaking off the aftermath of the injury is also great. In addition to a foul batting injury in 2019, Yelich was plagued by a chronic back injury. Bellinger suffered a fractured rib in his left leg in 2021 and also injured his left hamstring.
It is especially encouraging as the season performance is improving as time goes by. In the last 15 games, Yelich is recording an OPS of 0.988 and Bellinger is recording an OPS of 1.264. On this day, the two hit home runs side by side against Cincinnati and Boston, respectively.
With the win, Yelich’s Milwaukee defeated Cincinnati by one game and recaptured the sole lead in the Central Division of the National League. Yelich’s performance is absolutely necessary in the postseason competition for the rest of the season. Bellinger’s Chicago Cubs are slightly behind Milwaukee in third place, seven games behind them. However, Bellinger’s recent performance is so frightening. MLB.com predicted that Bellinger could become a ‘blue chip’ in the trade market this season.