Dodgers, Cody Bellinger reach record deal for first-year arbitration eligible player

It's been quite the offseason for Cody Bellinger. 

The Los Angeles Dodgers star first took home the NL MVP Award in November. Friday, the 24-year-old experienced a record payday. 

Bellinger, who just completed his third season in Major League Baseball, avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $11.5 million deal, as first reported by the Los Angeles Times' Mike DiGiovanna.

It's a record payday for first-year arbitration eligible players, surpassing the one-year, $10.85 million deal Kris Bryant reached with the Chicago Cubs in January 2018. 

Bellinger, who also earned NL Rookie of the Year honors in 2017, hit a career-high 47 home runs with a .305 average and .406 on-base percentage in 2019. He had 115 RBI and led the National League in total bases as well as intentional walks.

Cody Bellinger during the 2019 NLDS. (Photo: Gary A. Vasquez, USA TODAY Sports)

Bellinger also took home a Gold Glove for his outfield play, primarily manning right field following the offseason trade of Yasiel Puig. 

Bellinger is eligible for arbitration three more times and can be a free agent after the 2023 season. 

NL MVP Cody Bellinger’s $11.5 million deal w #Dodgers breaks 1st year arbitration-eligible record, as @MikeDiGiovanna reported.

The Dodgers also reached one-year deals with shortstop Corey Seager ($7.6 million), winner of the 2016 NL Rookie of the Year, and Enrique Hernandez ($5.9 million). 

Contributing: Associated Press

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