Yasiel Puig, Season Savior?


If everything had gone according to the Dodger’s plan, then Yasiel Puig would have never seen the major leagues this season, save for a September call up. Calling up Puig now on June 2nd was not what was supposed to happen. The Dodgers were not supposed to suck and be buried in last place, and Puig was supposed to mature in the minors.

My how things change. It’s June and because of the Dodger’s terrible play, injuries, and inept management, have forced the Dodgers to make a move, and they have finally called up super prospect Yasiel Puig. The Dodgers optioned Matt Magill back to Albuquerque to make room on the roster. Puig will reportedly make his MLB debut tomorrow night against the Padres, and he will wear number 66, which is the same number he wore in spring training. With the Dodgers languishing in last place and infuriating and disappointing their entire fan base, a move had to be made soon. The Dodgers are 23-32 and 8.5 games back in last place in the National League West. The Dodgers rank 29th in MLB in runs scored, and 28th in home runs. They rank near the bottom of the league in every single hitting and power category.

Can Yasiel Puig save the Dodger’s atrocious 2013 season?-Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

So the Dodgers are hoping that Puig can give them a much needed offensive boost and bring some energy into a dull and lifeless lineup.

Puig is 6’3 and 245 pounds, and 22 years old. The Cuban prospect had been playing in the Southern league for the Dodger’s double AA affiliate Chattanooga Lookouts. This season in 40 games played for the Lookouts, Puig is hitting .313 (46 for 147) with a .383 OBP, and a slugging percentage of .599. The right hander has hit eight home runs and driven in 37 in 167 plate appearances. Some people have been concerned about his lack of plate discipline, as Puig has walked only 15 times while whiffing 29 times, but his OBP is high because he gets so many hits. Puig has also stolen 13 of 18 bases.

Puig has spent most of his time in right field, playing 31 games there. However he has played four games in center field, and three games in left. Puig has made only two errors in the field this season.

Some people were also concerned about Puig’s maturity level after some bat flipping incident got headlines across twitter. I could care less about bat flips. The Dodgers are terrible this season and there is no reason Puig shouldn’t be playing every day. I would bat Puig right behind Adrian Gonzalez in the cleanup spot.

I still don’t think that Puig is going to save the Dodger’s season. Honestly I don’t think anything can save the season anymore, save for drastic changes in management. After all Puig can’t pitch, or hold leads, or play shortstop, or third base, or manage. Puig can make things a lot more exciting. I think this is a desperate move by the Dodgers. The club is floundering and going nowhere, so it’s well worth a shot.  Puig can provide a much needed spark to a team that has fallen completely flat.

Will Yasiel Puig save the Dodger season? No, no he will not. But he will be exciting to watch, and by extension make Dodger games more exciting to watch. That at least gives us something to look forward too. In this lousy season of failure, that’s something that can bring us what we haven’t had in a long time, an injection of hope.