The Los Angeles Dodgers were represented by two of their players on the MLB All-Star team that visited Japan for a series of games.
Yasiel Puig and Drew Butera participated in the Japan Series that ended with the final exhibition game on Thursday morning. The MLB All-Stars split the exhibition games and lost three of the five regular games. Puig enjoyed his time on the field, racking up five hits in the series and making a few defensive highlights.
According to Davin Venn of MLB.com, the Dodger outfielder discussed the series:
They beat us those first three games when we weren’t in game shape, but now a few of us are indeed in shape,” Puig said before Thursday’s trip finale, an exhibition game against Samurai Japan at Okinawa Cellular Stadium. “I think we should play two or three more. The tournament should be a little longer.”
Puig also talked about what impressed him the most about Team Samurai:
All of the discipline they have,” he said. “Everything is about respect, almost as if [the players] are apologizing. And the fans are great. They support their team from the first inning to the ninth. That’s a nice thing.”
Puig did not get a hit in the first three games of the series before going 5-for-9 in the last two games. It was a nice return to the field for Puig, who was last heard of when he was benched for Game 4 of the NLDS in favor of Andre Ethier. The 23-year-old was the subject of trade rumors immediately following the Dodgers loss, but was recently given a vote of confidence by the new front office.
Now that the series is over, Puig revealed his offseason plan:
Workouts, to have a better season than the one I had last year,” said Puig, who hit .296 in 148 games for the Dodgers, with 16 home runs, 69 RBIs and an OPS of .863. “I need to keep working hard in order to keep growing in baseball and to get far.”
The Dodgers would greatly benefit from Puig improving even more heading into his third season with the team.
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