With Joc Pederson on the disabled list and the team’s outfield production stalled, the Dodgers have decided to call up top prospect Cody Bellinger, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. The team needs to clear a spot on its 40-man roster to make room for Bellinger, a 21-year-old who was rated the No. 7 prospect in the sport before the season by Baseball America.
Bellinger can play first base, but he is expected to aid the team’s outfield upon his debut. He will likely rotate between left field and center field against right-handed pitchers.
Bellinger was hitting .343 with five home runs and a 1.055 on-base plus slugging percentage in 18 games for triple-A Oklahoma City.
Pederson was placed on the disabled list on Monday because of a groin strain. Manager Dave Roberts had indicated the injury would likely require at least a week of rest. But Bellinger could also be a long-term solution in left field, where Andrew Toles has struggled to start the season. Toles has hit .220 in 18 games.
Bellinger is the son of former Angels reliever Clay Bellinger. The Dodgers selected him in the fourth round of the 2013 draft.