Mookie Betts looks to turn around his disappointing 2021 season
As the reigning World Series champs, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been a strong team. Despite their good season so far, star player Mookie Betts has struggled. He wants to turn his season around to replicate his title-winning form from the 2020 season.
Since he’s a former MVP, Betts regularly watches game film to work on his game. It has been a hard few months since the 2021 season started because Betts has had underwhelming games. He wants to come back to the MVP Betts like the videos he’s been watching.
‘I’ve been watching videos a lot’, Betts said. ‘But as you grow and you get older, year by year things change and so it’s really just trying to understand what my body wants to do and how to work with that. I mean, it does. But I also try to live in the moment and right now I may not be the same guy. My body may not feel the same as it did then’.
Why Betts is a big part of the Dodgers system
When the Dodgers made the trade for Betts in 2020, they turned them into title contenders and eventually World Series winners. They were the best team in the MLB last season but they’ve not looked like it in the 2021 season.
Betts is a big part of that because he’s been underwhelming. His performances are still solid for an MLB player but it’s not similar to what people see regularly from a player of Betts’ calibre. If this becomes consistent, it will be hard for the Dodgers to pull off a repeat since Betts was the star of their 2020 run which was stamped by the World Series win.
Betts wants to be the star again and he knows he has issues.
‘I’m pretty healthy right now’, he said. ‘I’m just trying to understand where I’m at. Some days I’m tired. Some days I’m not. The days I’m tired, I have to just work with what I got’.
The Dodgers were favourites to repeat as World Series champs but it will be hard to replicate that if Betts keeps playing this way.
The bright side
Dodgers coach Dave Roberts knows he wants to help Betts on his way to returning to his stellar form. The bright side is the Dodgers are prepared to build around Betts and help him perform better. The team is filled with stars which have helped them stay afloat during their star’s slump.
Roberts has a big role in that since he’s the man who sets up their tactics.
‘The thing is with elite hitters, they can control the barrel’, Roberts said. ‘When there’s a ball up and away, a very tough pitch to keep fair, and when you do that you’re controlling the barrel, and so that’s a good sign. I have to find a way to limit all the negatives around myself and limit all the bad moves and whatnot that I’ve been doing and try and repeat the good things’.
It will be interesting to see how the Dodgers can perform under pressure. They are still in the middle of the regular season. There is a lot of time left before the playoffs when the Dodgers can prove they’re worthy of being called champs.
It will be up to the team to perform under pressure. Betts will be a big name to watch out for since he’s the player who they will rely on.
Words: Cholo Martin