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Los Angeles Dodgers: 4 bold predictions for the 2022 MLB season

2022 MLB season, Los Angeles Dodgers predictions

After ending a longstanding title drought in 2020, everyone immediately set high expectations for the Los Angeles Dodgers to defend their World Series win in 2021. They finished with a 106-56 record but eventually succumbed to the Atlanta Braves in the NL Championship Series which ultimately ended their title hopes last season.

Despite failing to secure back-to-back titles, the Dodgers are still pegged as heavy favorites to win it all in 2022. Their key players will surely have to step up and perform in order for them to live up to the lofty expectations and get back to the top of the league this time around.

With that said, let’s take a look at four bold predictions for the Dodgers in 2022.

Los Angeles Dodgers predictions

4. Cody Bellinger will bounce back and have a significantly better performance in 2022.

Star outfielder Cody Bellinger had a down season in 2021 as injuries kept him out and hindered him from playing at his best. He only hit .165 in 95 appearances which was an abysmal level of production for the 2019 NL MVP.

Despite his lowly numbers in the regular season, Bellinger had a resurgence in the playoffs where he normed .353/.436/.471 in 12 games. The team is hoping that he can carry over his previous success in the postseason upon heading to 2022 in a bid to have a bounceback campaign for Los Angeles.

Additionally, Corey Seager’s relocation to the Texas Rangers as well as Max Muncy’s elbow injury will also give a bigger load for Bellinger. Though there is more pressure for him to perform this time around, he can certainly use the opportunities to atone for his subpar 2021 campaign and gain momentum to have a better 2022 season for the Dodgers.

3. Walker Buehler will nab the first NL Cy Young award of his career.

Dave Roberts and company always saw the potential in Walker Buehler to be a solid pitcher in the league which led them to draft him with the 24th overall pick in 2015. Since making the jump to the major league roster, the Kentucky native has been living up to expectations and putting up impressive performances for the Dodgers.

Last season, Buehler finished fourth in the NL Cy Young race after recording 2.47 ERA, 3.16 FIP, along with 212 strikeouts over 207 2/3 innings in 33 appearances. Next season, he is expected to be challenged by other potent pitchers in Jacob deGrom, Max Scherzer, and reigning awardee Corbin Burnes for the said award.

Despite the competition, the two-time All-Star is poised to play at an even higher level and eventually establish himself as one of the best pitchers today by bringing home the hardware next season.

2. Mookie Betts will win his second MVP title.

Upon joining the Dodgers, Mookie Betts quickly introduced himself in the National League after finishing second in voting for the NL MVP honors back in 2020. Unfortunately, he failed to translate his previous success into the 2021 season as he had an injury-plagued campaign that kept him out for 40 games.

Still, Betts grabbed his fifth All-Star selection and concluded the season with .264 batting average, 23 homers, and 58 RBIs. Now looking to return in the pink of health, it is expected that the 29-year-old will get back on track and have a better performance come 2022.

At this point in time, everyone has already seen how good Mookie Betts can slug it out, especially if he is in peak playing form. If he won’t be bothered by any major injuries then there is a high chance that he will vie for the second MVP award of his career next season.

1. The Dodgers will contend for the World Series and win it all.

The Dodgers will continue to have most of their core players for the 2022 season though they also had key subtractions in Max Scherzer and Corey Seager. Despite losing their services, the team is still capable of attaining significant success as they remain to have one of the deepest rosters in the league.

Undeniably, they will be met with tough competition as the San Francisco Giants, Milwaukee Brewers, and the defending champion Atlanta Braves are all looking to conquer the National League in 2022. However, the Dodgers do have sufficient talent on their side that will allow them to match up with the other contenders and aim for the top of the mountain once more.

Since the players are already set in place, all they have to do is stay healthy and deliver good performances for the team next season. If Mookie Betts, Cody Bellinger, and Walker Buehler can consistently produce at a high level then the Dodgers will be in a good position to regain the NL West from the Giants and finally win back the crown by the end of next season.