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NL Notes: Bellinger snags NL lead in home runs

National League news and links

Colorado Rockies v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Cody Bellinger is having a spectacular year for the Dodgers, as the 21-year-old continues to put up stats more commonly seen by a seasoned slugger. Going into Sunday’s game against Colorado, Bellinger has 22 homers —that’s tops in the National League, as only the YankeesAaron Judge, with 26, has more league-wide.

Bellinger’s success with the long ball is even more impressive when you look at what he’s done along the minor league circuit. This is not a guy that has been prone to power outbursts, but it’s safe to say that he’s figured out major-league pitching.

L.A. has to be hoping the dingers continue. They’re caught up in a three-team dogfight atop the NL West with Arizona and Colorado.

Here’s what else is happening around the National League:

Remember when it was truly a mystery as to whether or not the Mets would be sellers at the trade deadline. Well, those days are surely in the rearview mirror, as the Mets are poised to clean house at the end of July. Sitting at 33-41 going into Sunday’s games, New York needs to prioritize the future, and letting some big names go might be the first step in getting this team moving in the right direction.

We might have a high-profile position conversion on our hands. Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman may be moving over to third base, as the Braves feel he most effectively fills the void at the hot corner. Historically, you’ll find that conversions rarely end successfully, but Freeman is a special guy. Plus, for a rebuilding club like the Braves, there’s really nothing to lose.

The Rockies are in desperate need of Jon Gray’s return from the DL. It’s hard to imagine a team 17 games over .500 being desperate for anything, but the Rockies are in the fight of their lives against their divisional counterparts. Gray acts as the de facto ace of this team when he’s out there, providing the Rockies with deep outings on the regular. If Gray can settle into a good groove, he might carry this team deep into the postseason.

Nationals manager Dusty Baker wants the D.C. legion of fans to be a little louder in their support of their hometown team. Baker expressed desire for more noise in Nationals Park during key situations, following a tough-fought walk-off win for the Nats on Friday night. The Nationals are a first-place team, so hopefully the team can sell some more tickets, raise the noise a few decibels, and inch closer to another division title.