Yasiel Puig’s time with the Dodgers was full of ridiculous highs, and a few lows. The Cuban phenom came to Los Angeles and set the baseball world on fire back 2013, and it was a whirlwind from that moment on.
Mark McGwire knows a thing or two about hitting, and he served as the Dodgers’ hitting coach starting in 2013, Puig’s first year. As it turns out, Big Mac felt that Puig wasted a lot of his potential with his off-field antics and personality. He talked about Puig’s career recently on am570.
The outside world pulled him away from what the games all about…if he had the mindset of Michael Jordan…I said he was gonna have two maybe three MVP’s, that’s the kind of talent he has…you have to think about the way he was raised and how he grew up and the stories of how he got over here. And then you’re given a lot of money…You have this great talent, and it’s not being used properly. To me it’s not physical, it’s all mental.
The statement might not have gone over well with the Dodgers faithful, as there were quick and sharp responses on Twitter. It’s no secret that Puig’s larger-than-life personality got him into trouble on more than one occasion. In fact, it likely didn’t help his cause when the Dodgers demoted him to the minor leagues back in 2016.
But to say that Puig’s lack of focus cost him a couple of MVP awards seems like a reach. Puig only received MVP votes in his first two seasons with the Dodgers, and has never come close to MVP caliber numbers. Maybe McGwire saw something that we did not, but then again, he never won an MVP Award either.
What do you think? Is Big Mac out of line here?