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Cody Bellinger signs one-year, $16.1 million deal, avoiding salary arbitration

Bellinger was eligible for salary arbitration for a second time

World Series - Tampa Bay Rays v Los Angeles Dodgers - Game One Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

The Dodgers avoided salary arbitration with Cody Bellinger, signing the former MVP to a one-year, $16.1 million deal, per multiple reports.

Bellinger made $11.5 million in 2020 coming off his MVP season, setting a record salary for a player eligible for salary arbitration for the first time. Friday at 10 a.m. PT was the deadline for players and teams to exchange salary figures.

Matt Swartz’s arbitration projections at MLB Trade Rumors had a wide range for Bellinger, between $11.5 million and $15.9 million.

My guess for Bellinger’s 2021 salary was $13.75 million. So, I was way off.

Last year, Bellinger was a Super Two, which if he continues to go year-by-year will have four arbitration years. This year, with three years, 160 days of major league service time, his range of projected 2021 salaries from MLB Trade Rumors was wide, from $11.5 million to $15.9 million.

Bellinger had a relatively down year in 2020, hitting .239/.333/.455, a 114 wRC+, with 12 home runs, setting career lows in rate stats across the board. It continued in the postseason, hitting .212/.316/.455 in 18 games, though he provided a lasting memory in franchise lore with a pennant-winning home run in the seventh inning of Game 7 of the NLCS against Atlanta.

Bellinger in November had surgery on the right shoulder that he dislocated while celebrating that pennant-winning homer, though is expected to be ready for the start of spring training.