The 2015 season has been a tough one for Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig. He battled hamstring issues throughout the year, which limited one of the club’s most dynamic players to a career-low 79 regular season games.
Puig initially wasn’t expected to return prior to the regular season ending, much less make the Dodgers’ 25-man postseason roster. However, he was reinstated from the disabled list on the second-to-last day of the regular season, and in some part due to Scott Van Slyke’s wrist injury, made the National League Division Series roster.
However, Puig hasn’t been able to return to his old form. The former All-Star has gone 0-for-6 with three strikeouts in the four games played so far, making just one start. While Puig has been unable to contribute offensively, Mattingly isn’t discouraged by the year his outfielder had, according to Bill Plunkett of the OC Register:
I don’t know how frustrated he is,” Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said. “We’re not frustrated with him other than he’s had injuries.”
Mattingly said Puig’s season was filled with some bright moments, but resigned to the fact the Cuban native never managed to find any consistency because of the injuries:
It’s just been up and down,” Mattingly said of Puig’s season. “He’s never really got any kind of true rhythm, I don’t think, through the course of the year. He got started, actually swung the bat good early, got hurt, came back, took him awhile. He kind of reinjured that leg before he even got back (in May). Played awhile, had another one (hamstring injury).”
Upoin returning from the disabled list, Puig said he was willing to fill any role in the postseason, putting the team’s goals ahead of his. With right-hander Jacob deGrom starting Game 5 for the New York Mets, it’s unlikely Puig will be in the Dodgers’ lineup.