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Dodgers News: Yasiel Puig Wants to Start “Here or Somewhere Else”

Sep 4, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers right fielder Yasiel Puig (66) looks to the sky in the dugout after hitting a three run home run in the third inning against the San Diego Padres at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Yasiel Puig and Justin Turner were baristas for the morning, but Puig provided a tidbit of not-so-surprising news.

Puig told Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times he wants to start again, regardless of where.

That’s expected from Puig’s perspective. After his demotion-turned-promotion, he was a model citizen and upped his play. Puig slashed .281/.338/.561 with four home runs and 11 RBI after his call-up.

The Dodgers shopped him but never received the offer they wanted. Milwaukee claimed him off waivers, but again no deal was reached. The rumor mill has been quiet on Puig all offseason, though it’s widely believed the Dodgers would listen to offers. Puig still has the natural talent and upside to be worth a “change of scenery” gamble. The organization wanted Puig to slim down over the winter as well.

Puig led L.A. with a .471 slugging percentage against left-handers, as well as with a .784 OPS. He could be a huge asset to a team that desperately needs that production if he stays put. If the Dodgers are dedicated to eventually moving him, it may be in their best interest to see if he can rebuild value after the roller coaster 2016.

[graphiq id=”11Bz3CgpfWB” title=”Yasiel Puig 2016 Batting Splits By Pitcher Hand” width=”640″ height=”545″ url=”https://w.graphiq.com/w/11Bz3CgpfWB” link=”http://baseball-players.pointafter.com/l/13252/Yasiel-Puig” link_text=”PointAfter | Graphiq” ]

Joc Pederson is set in center field, but there are two openings in the corners. Howie Kendrick was traded to Philadelphia and Josh Reddick departed for the Houston Astros in free agency. In other words, Puig has a solid shot of earning a starting job. If he makes the most of the chance, perhaps the trade winds finally die down.

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Written by Gabe Burns

Gabe Burns is an award-winning journalist. He serves as a reporter and editor at the DodgersNation news desk. He additionally works as editor-in-chief of The Spectator, Valdosta State University's student paper. Gabe's work has been featured on a number of platforms, including Draft Breakdown and Pro Football Spot. His byline has been cited in media such as the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune. Aside from covering Dodgers baseball, Gabe enjoys watching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Orlando Magic and Tampa Bay Lightning. He can be followed on Twitter at @GabeBurns_DN.

3 Comments

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  1. To coin a phrase from The NFL; ” Not living up to your potential is an excuse for mediocrity.” I believe this is true of Puig. He has basically 1 facet of the 5 tools that he needs to address to be a factor in MLB.. No matter where he plays… And that issue is hitting. ( especially breaking pitches ) He showed that, in the past, he could hit those pitches.. NOW.. It is up to the hitting coach to earn his money and bring back Puig’s batting ability. If Puig listens.. and achieves.. All the better. If he wants to be a Prima Dona, then send him down the road in a package deal to get someone who fills the order… I adhere to The Billy Martin School of management..” Somebody has to be boss.. and it ain’t you!”

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