Each Major League Baseball season has ups and downs for players and teams. This article will focus on the former and which players are primed for a comeback in 2023 in the National League.
CANDIDATE #1: CODY BELLINGER
Cody Bellinger was once the National League’s Most Valuable Player. But Cody hasn’t been the same player over the past few seasons. An injury during a celebration in the 2020 World Series dislocated Bellinger’s shoulder, and his swing hasn’t been the same. However, now a few years removed, Bellinger’s shoulder should be fully healthy. And if Bellinger’s should is healed, his dynamic and ultra-aggressive swing should return. A healthy Cody Bellinger can once again regain that MVP-caliber form or at least win the National League comeback player of the year.
CANDIDATE #2: JOEY VOTTO
Joey Votto is a former NL MVP and sabermetric darling. For Votto, age has come on strong and hindered his general output. However, Votto’s injuries from last season can be a blessing in disguise, as it has given him time to heal his body. If Votto can show he’s healthy and has the bat speed necessary to compete with the best in the league, Joey can be the 2023 NL comeback player of the year.
CANDIDATE #3: JESSE WINKER
The 2022 season didn’t go according to plan for Jesse Winker. In his first and only season in Seattle, Winker had the worst year of his career, ending with an OPS of .688, which was .162 OPS points worse than his previous career low. With that in mind, the 2023 season can only go up from there for Winker. When Winker was last in the NL Central in 2021, Jesse had his career-best season with an OPS of .949 and an OPS+ of 143 with 24 home runs and 71 RBIs. The Mariners traded Winker back to the NL Central, and with that return to the familiar, Winker hopes to return to the form that made him an All-Star for the Cincinnati Reds and a nod for NL comeback player of the year.
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