Alden GonzalezESPN Staff members AuthorClose
- Joined ESPN in 2016 to address the Los Angeles Rams
- Previously coated the Angels for MLB.com
LOS ANGELES — Improved late than by no means.
Whilst Yasiel Puig arrived at Dodger Stadium way too late to get his Countrywide League championship ring, he was just in time to hit a two-operate homer off Clayton Kershaw in his very first at bat from his previous workforce.
Puig was greeted with cheers as he approached the plate, and Dodgers fans chanted his title as he ran the bases.
Puig — who arrived approximately 70 minutes late to a news meeting that was supposed to get started at 3 p.m. PT — claimed, in Spanish right before the activity, that he “may well cry” if he heard Dodgers lovers who supported him so ardently in the course of his six-calendar year stint in L.A. chant his identify all over again before his to start with at-bat.
“I have not viewed the games I don’t know how a lot of people, how many admirers, have been coming below,” Puig explained of Dodger Stadium, although answering a person of various questions in Spanish. “But I’m certain that when I played listed here, there were far more admirers.”
Puig was a essential igniter at Dodger Stadium from 2013 to 2018, a tumultuous time that began with exhilarating performances, phased into mediocrity and was accentuated by extremities. Puig energized the enthusiasts with his expertise and flamboyance but frequently vexed the users of his organization with his recklessness, which manifested alone equally on and off the discipline.
It was fitting, then, that Puig skipped the ceremony to welcome him and the other former Dodgers involved in the trade that despatched Puig to the Cincinnati Reds back again to L.A. Dodgers supervisor Dave Roberts was joined by operator Mark Walter, CEO Stan Kasten and president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman outdoors the visiting clubhouse on Monday afternoon. Matt Kemp, Alex Wood and Kyle Farmer acquired their new jewellery there and designed small chat.
“Puig failed to make it,” Roberts mentioned driving a wry smile.
Puig, Kemp, Wood and Farmer ended up all greeted with a tribute online video prior to the video game Monday night.
Roberts, who has experienced nice exchanges with Puig because the trade, stated he predicted the followers to deliver Puig with a standing ovation.
“As effectively they should,” he mentioned. “This man did a good deal of items in the local community and served the Dodgers do a lot of excellent factors.”
Puig entered the series with a .163/.two hundred/.302 slash line in forty five plate appearances for a Reds workforce that experienced won only 5 moments in its initially fourteen game titles. But Roberts, who activated Kershaw off the injured listing to start out this match, expects Puig’s finest this week.
“When he’s determined, incentivized, he’s a pretty very good player,” Roberts reported. “This is as much enthusiasm as can be in entrance of him.”
Puig dazzled early on, posting a .305/.386/.502 slash line when displaying elite protection and infectious vitality from 2013 to 2014, a stretch in which he produced the All-Star crew and nearly gained the NL Rookie of the 12 months award. From 2015 to 2016, Puig was restricted to 183 online games. From 2017 to 2018, his slash line fell to .264/.337/.490.
All through a information meeting that lasted approximately fifteen minutes, Puig spoke glowingly about the comradery that exists inside of the Reds’ clubhouse. He pointed out the younger gamers who frequently ask him concerns and feel to admire him. He talked about all the foods they share jointly and how often they textual content off the area. He known as Joey Votto “the best person I have ever met in my everyday living.” And he hinted, very strongly, about how he failed to have adequate of that with the Dodgers.
“That’s just one of the most gorgeous matters I have with my new staff,” Puig reported in Spanish. “This assist, and to be by every single other’s side each and every day and conversing in the locker home, on the bus, on the flight, on the industry, off the field, we always have great conversation, and that is what helps make me not come to feel as significantly nostalgia as you could believe I would come to feel for the Dodgers.”
Right after 40 minutes went by in a silent job interview area prior to Puig’s information conference, Reds vice president of media relations Rob Butcher approached the dais to announce that Puig had but to get there, drawing a chuckle from the media contingent.
“I will not know what else I can explain to you individuals,” Butcher explained. “I am sorry.”
About half an hour later, soon soon after Roberts accomplished his session in the dwelling dugout, Puig arrived in the interview room donning a black T-shirt in honor of Jackie Robinson. He was advised by a Spanish-talking reporter that the media had been awaiting his arrival.
Puig slumped his shoulders.
“I was hoping they’d all go away.”