The 2019 Most Valuable Player (MVP) race in Major League Baseball (MLB) was hotly contested.
In the American League (AL), Mike Trout (31) of the Los Angeles Angels dominated, as he always does, but in the National League (NL), the winner was hard to predict. That’s because the Los Angeles Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger, 27, was challenging the Milwaukee Brewers’ Christian Yelich, 31, for his second straight NL MVP award.
At the time, the MVP honors went to Bellinger, who had 47 home runs, a .305 batting average, and an OPS of 1.035, but Yelich was a close second with 44 home runs, a .329 batting average, and an OPS of 1.100.
Then, the following year, the unbelievable happened. Bellinger and Yelich, who were in a good-natured competition for the NL’s best hitter, went into a tandem slump.
Bellinger struggled to a 0.788 OPS in the shortened 2020 season, followed by a 0.542 OPS in 2021. He didn’t rebound with a 0.654 OPS in 2022, and the Dodgers released him last November.
The Dodgers had given up on a franchise star who had won Rookie of the Year in 2017 and MVP in 2019.
This coincidentally happened to Yelich at the same time. Encouraged by Yelich’s performance, Milwaukee signed him to a nine-year, $215 million extension after the 2019 season. For small-market Milwaukee, it was the most expensive contract in franchise history.
However, Yelich was out of whack in 2020 with an OPS of 0.786, then even worse in 2021 with an OPS of 0.735, and last year with an OPS of 0.738, which was a far cry from his $200 million price tag. The franchise’s fate was on the line, and he was a bust.바카라사이트
But this year, a reversal is taking place. Two players who fell into a three-year slump side by side are rebounding at the same time.
Bellinger, who became a free agent late last year, headed to the Cubs on a one-year, $17.5 million deal – at the time, many thought the Cubs had overpaid – but Bellinger is washing away those concerns with his performance.
In 55 games, he’s had a resurgence, hitting .298 with eight home runs and an OPS of .838. In a road game against Milwaukee earlier today (the 7th), he went 4-for-4 with a home run, even though the team lost.
The same can be said for Jelich. In 84 games this season, he’s bounced back with 11 homers, a .287 batting average, and an .840 OPS, but in his last seven games, he’s looked like his old self, hitting .379 with a 1.161 OPS. Even in today’s game against the Cubs, he homered to lead Milwaukee to a 6-5 win.
With Milwaukee and the Cubs sitting in second and third place in the NL Central, respectively, fans are eager to see if the two stars who have rebounded at the same time will be able to replicate their MVP days and lead their teams to greater heights.