Dodgers’ Cody Bellinger dislocates shoulder, pops it back in and carries on

Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger puts his right shoulder back in place after it popped out during a dive for a baseball Friday in San Diego.
Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger puts his right shoulder back in place after it popped out during a dive for a baseball Friday in San Diego.
(Gregory Bull / Associated Press)

Usually, when a player notifies his manager and trainer that his shoulder popped out and back in, alarms ring. But that didn’t happen Friday night after Cody Bellinger popped his right shoulder out diving for a baseball in the fourth inning of the Dodgers’ win over the San Diego Padres. Instead, Bellinger popped the shoulder back in its place and insisted he was fine. It had happened before and he could play on.

And Bellinger did after testing the shoulder during the next half an inning, doubling later in the game, as the Dodgers overcame a three-run deficit. But Bellinger wasn’t in the Dodgers starting lineup Saturday for just the second time this season. Manager Dave Roberts said Bellinger was still sore but “playable” and available to pinch-hit. He said he anticipates Bellinger will start in the series finale Sunday.

“He was a little disappointed he wasn’t in there tonight,” Roberts said, “but I think the best thing was to give him an extra day.”


Bellinger had the same shoulder pop out last season. He didn’t go on the disabled list, but Roberts described that previous instance as more severe than Friday’s pain. Without Bellinger, Alex Verdugo got the start Saturday against Padres left-hander Joey Lucchesi.

If all Bellinger misses is one game, it’ll be a huge break for the Dodgers. The 23-year-old slugger entered Saturday leading or in a tie for the lead across the majors in batting average (.415), home runs (14), runs batted in (38), hits (49), runs (32), total bases (100), on-base percentage (.489), and slugging percentage (.847).

Roberts gives props to Machado

Manny Machado’s time with the Dodgers was brief but eventful last season. He helped the club reach its second consecutive World Series after it acquired him during the All-Star break to do just that. He hit a couple of big home runs. He stepped on a first baseman’s foot, taunted Milwaukee faithful, and bluntly remarked he would never be mistaken for “Johnny Hustle.”

On Friday, Machado faced his former team for the first time. And in his first plate appearance he took Clayton Kershaw deep, depositing a slider 427 feet away for a two-run home run.

“I enjoyed having Manny,” Roberts said. “I really did. To be able to write his name in the lineup every day, is a good thing for a manager. I think that the guys liked him. He helped us get to the World Series. I think he got a little bit of a bad rap, some of it self-induced, but he’s a heck of a ballplayer.”


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Short hops

Left-hander Caleb Ferguson is scheduled to pitch in a simulated game at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday. Ferguson was put on the 10-day injured list April 28 because of a strained oblique. Ferguson has given up five runs in 13 innings out of the bullpen this season. … Tony Cingrani, another left-handed reliever, was sent on a rehab assignment with Class-A Rancho Cucamonga on Saturday. Cingrani, 29, has been on the IL all season because of a left shoulder impingement.

Twitter: @jorgecastillo