Former Hamilton High star goes from Chandler Little League to Los Angeles Dodgers SanTan Sun News

Former Hamilton High star goes from Chandler Little League to Los Angeles Dodgers

May 7th, 2017 | by SanTan Sun News
Former Hamilton High star goes from Chandler Little League to Los Angeles Dodgers
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Former Hamilton High School star Cody Bellinger began the 2017 season as the top prospect for one of the best farm systems in Major League Baseball, and he is showing no signs of slowing down.

Having started his baseball career on a Chandler Little League team, he’s now stepping it up in his first full season in Triple A for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Early in the season, there had been speculation that the Dodgers may look to bring him up ahead of schedule due to the offensive struggles of outfielders Joc Pederson and Andrew Toles.

After the Dodgers were forced to place Pederson on the 10-day disabled list with a recent groin injury, Bellinger was officially called up to majors on April 25.

“Bleacher Report” has compared him to Giants first basemen Brandon Belt but with more power – not bad for a guy who entered the minor leagues as primarily a contact hitter.

Bellinger began his baseball career as a 5-foot-1 superstar for the Chandler Little League team that made it all the way to Williamsport, Pennsylvania, to represent the West in the 2007 Little League World Series.

That team was coached by Bellinger’s father, Clay Bellinger, who played four seasons in the majors and won two World Series titles with the New York Yankees. He is most remembered for his tremendous catch in game 2 of the 2000 World Series, where he robbed the Mets’ Todd Zeile of a two-run homer in the ninth inning to seal an important victory for the eventual champs.

A few years after the LLWS, Bellinger took his talents to Hamilton High School to play for legendary coach Mike Woods, where he hit an astounding .429 in his final season as a Husky. Bellinger was voted team MVP following the 2012 and 2013 seasons.

Cody’s younger brother, Cole Bellinger, is currently a senior at Hamilton.

With Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez signed through the 2018 season, many scouts believed Bellinger would break into the league as a corner outfielder, even though he is widely regarded as the heir to Gonzalez at first base.

Bellinger was drafted by the Dodgers with the 124th pick in the fourth round of the 2013 MLB Draft. He originally had a verbal commitment to play baseball at the University of Oregon, but he chose to sign a $700,000 contract and make the leap to the pros right out of high school.

Since then, he has done nothing but pound the baseball, drawing the attention of pro scouts all across the league. Baseball America currently has Bellinger ranked as the No. 7 overall prospect, while MLB.com has him ranked No. 10.

Bellinger has had a hot start to the 2017 season, hitting .360 with five home runs and 14 RBIs through 13 games with Triple-A Oklahoma City. Most recently, Bellinger was named to the MLB.com Prospect Team of the Week, recording three home runs, two doubles and four stolen bases in an eight-game span.

(Larry Goren/Four Seam Images)

Former Hamilton High School star Cody Bellinger is playing his first full season in Triple A for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

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