While Ryu’s time with the Dodgers ended for extremely typical (and unfortunate) baseball reasons — hey, got to follow the money — Puig’s career in LA dissolved when he was dealt to the Cincinnati Reds in the salary dump/prospect acquisition that eventually paved the way for the Mookie Betts trade.
We’re not sure if Ryu and Puig got to say a proper goodbye at any point, but now that The Wild Horse’s career is set to resume in Korea, the slugger has a lot to learn from his old cohort, currently starring atop a rebuilt Blue Jays rotation.
This longer-than-normal offseason means Ryu is still working overtime overseas (can’t report to a camp you’re legally banned from!). That’s depressing for many reasons, but at least it brought us a Ryu-Puig reunion that never would’ve happened otherwise at what … appears … to be a barber visit? Wherever it is, Ryu is rubbin’ Puig’s bare head.
Ex-Dodgers Hyun-Jin Ryu and Yasiel Puig reunited in Korea
The 31-year-old Puig is set to join the South Korean club Kiwoom Heroes, and while it should be a good chance to reconnect with his baseball instincts (and old friends), there’s a reason he’s set to be one of the only active major leaguers in the upcoming weeks.
After Puig’s exit from the Dodgers, it was revealed that the team had gone a long way towards covering up two separate sexual assault allegations via secret settlements. While we’ve seen players in similar situations get second, third and fourth chances at the MLB level, it seems highly unlikely that Los Angeles will be the ones to take that plunge.
Hopefully, Ryu’s lessons on acclimation to Korea go a long way, and we never have to address a different kind of reunion.