Compared to most other other professional athletes, the amount of time Yasiel Puig has spent in the United States pales in comparison. However, that’s not to say Puig hasn’t made the attempt to quickly take advantage of opportunities previously unavailable to him.
One look at Puig’s Instagram account and it’s evident he enjoys attending Los Angeles Lakers games and taking photos with other athletes and celebrities. With the Dodgers in Washington D.C. to play the Nationals for a three-game series, Puig had the opportunity to visit the White House. Via J.P. Hoornstra of the Orange County Register, the Cuban immigrant shared his experience:
Wow, I was nervous inside,” Puig said through an interpreter.
Puig didn’t clarify how the tour was arranged, which he took with his cousin, but he did provide some details as to what the tour entailed:
It was a tour. It was a fun tour,” Puig said. “I got to see the White House, the president’s offices, the press room – all of those things you see on TV.”
Puig’s rise to stardom has been a mixture of amazement, praise and criticism. Displays of exuberance and impressive accomplishments for a player of Puig’s age and inexperience have been coupled with momentary lapses of judgment that resulted in reckless play and arrests.
The young outfielder, pegged as a cornerstone of the franchise moving forward, has recently managed to avoid negative national headlines. A media firestorm did erupt as alleged details of Puig’s escape from Cuba were brought to light, but it subsided rather quickly as the Dodgers and Puig both refused to offer comment.
After a slow start to the season in terms of batting average, Puig caught fire on the Dodgers’ nine-game road trip and is now hitting .310 with four home runs and 22 RBIs. Puig has been particularly impressive with runners in scoring position, batting .405 with 21 RBIs. The Dodgers received a bit of a scare as he crashed into the outfield fence Sunday, which he’s recovered from after missing two games.
Dodgers Pre Game: Andre Ethier, Matt Kemp, Clayton Kershaw and Yasiel Puig