Yasiel Puig missed a third straight game Friday, but it didn’t have too much of a negative impact on the Los Angeles Dodgers, who won their fifth consecutive game and ended the Colorado Rockies’ six-game road winning streak.
Puig began limping after a ninth-inning catch in Monday’s game against the Seattle Mariners and has since been able to shake free of tightness in his left hamstring. He tested the hamstring by running sprints in the outfield under the watchful eye of trainer Stan Conte prior to Friday’s game, and it was then determined he wasn’t quite ready to be inserted back into the starting lineup.
Despite Puig not yet being able to return, manager Don Mattingly again expressed minimal concern over the situation in his pregame media scrum. “I don’t feel like it’s that serious,” he said. “I watched him and it seemed like he ran pretty good, but obviously he’s still feeling a little something and that’s where the hamstring always is tricky.”
When further pressed on the situation and asked if Puig eventually could see time on the disabled list, Mattingly offered a simple, “Obviously, I hope not. It doesn’t seem like that.” Puig told Dylan Heranndez of the LA Times he expected to return Saturday and was dismissive of a potential DL stint.
As Mattingly noted, a hamstring injury is one that can easily rear its ugly head should a player return too soon. Juan Uribe twice battled hamstring issues last season and had a minor bout earlier in the week.
Without Puig in the lineup the Dodgers have turned to Andre Ethier, who has started five of the last six games he’s appeared in. Ethier has recorded at least one hit in each of the games and threw out Wilin Rosario at home plate in the fourth inning of Friday’s win.
Dodgers Utility Man Justin Turner