Yasiel Puig began a second rehab assignment in the last month with High-A Rancho Cucamonga Thursday as he looks to make his way back from a strained left hamstring. He started in right field, batted second and played seven innings in that first game.
Puig went 2-for-4 with one double and a strikeout, and followed it up with a 1-for-3 effort, including a home run and a walk over six innings Friday, which contradicted Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly’s pregame comments from Dodger Stadium.
“They’re talking about him [Puig] playing nine tonight and then we’ll kind of assess what happens after today,” Mattingly said prior to the Dodgers’ second home tilt with the St. Louis Cardinals. “Obviously anything is possible, but we have to get through today [Friday].
“We’re really only on the second day of rehab. His workouts went really well and even before the games he was running at a good pace,” Mattingly continued when questioned if Puig would return this weekend. While the All-Star right fielder’s night didn’t involve nine innings, Mattingly said after the Dodgers’ loss it was not due to injury or setback.
As for Puig, he essentially for a second time in as many stints with the Quakes proclaimed himself healthy, and his rehab assignment all but complete, according to Ron Cervenka of True Blue LA:
It’s not my decision but this is my last game here,” Puig said through an interpreter after the Quakes beat the defending Cal League champion Lancaster JetHawks by a score of 4-1 in front of 3,254 at The Hangar in Lancaster.
While Puig is chomping at the bit to be activated from the disabled list, Mattingly wasn’t ready to commit to any date or timeline. “I have an idea, but we still haven’t really talked about it,” he said after Friday’s loss. “So we’ll talk about it and see where he’s at. Obviously, there’s a chance,” Mattingly responded when asked if Puig would next be seen Saturday at Dodger Stadium.
Puig this season is batting .279/.380/.465 with two home runs and four RBIs, having played in just 11 of the Dodgers’ 55 games.