Dodger fans can’t deny that there has been some animosity between manager Don Mattingly and outfielder Yasiel Puig the past few days. The right fielder was the source of Mattingly’s frustrations after Game 2 in Australia and Puig was specifically criticized for his base running errors as well as the way seems to claim false injuries when he underperforms at the plate. After Mattingly attempted to publicly clear the air between the two, it was reported that he and Puig had a meeting on Tuesday to discuss moving forward.
Despite Puig’s reputation as an unruly player, the right fielder was very open to accepting advice from his teammates in regards to his base running and hitting the cut off man. During his rookie season last year, the Cuban sensation rubbed many the wrong way with his bat flipping along with his defiant attitude. This public perception continued after he was arrested for the second time in eight months and came to camp overweight.
An unnamed veteran teammate in the meeting commented later, saying that Puig is a good kid who just came up through a different system than most players. Many lose sight of the fact that Puig grew up in a Cuban culture that is much different than major league baseball players are used to.
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