Although the Los Angeles Dodgers are looking to improve with Friday’s 1 p.m. PT non-waiver trade deadline looming, they’ve publicly maintained their hope is to do so without losing several prospects, namely Corey Seager and Julio Urias.
As such, it’s led to speculation Yasiel Puig is among those Los Angeles is shopping. Puig recently denied a report he asked for clarification on his status with the organization. The feedback he was said to have was received was that the Dodgers did not have him on the block. However, according to Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports, the Dodgers have made Puig available:
The #Dodgers have let teams know that Yasiel Puig is available in the right deal, but teams showing much more interest in their prospects.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) July 28, 2015
It’s been a rough 2015 season for the Cuban native as a strained hamstring injury forced him to the disabled list for the first time in his career. Puig thus far has managed to play in 53 games and is batting .253/.327/.423 with six home runs and 22 RBIs.
At just 24 years old and under contract through the 2018 season on a team-friendly deal, Puig understandably holds a decent trade value. One potential trade partner could be the New York Mets, who were said to be in the market for a right-handed corner outfielder.
However, for the Dodgers sake, packaging him can be a dangerous proposition as it would likely leave them with a starting outfield consisting of Carl Crawford, Andre Ethier and Joc Pederson. Additionally, the majority of Los Angeles’ trade targets have been pitchers in the final year of their respective contract.
That perhaps is where the qualifier (“right deal”) in Nightengale’s report comes into play. Cole Hamels, someone the Dodgers are believed to be in pursuit of, has three years remaining on his contract and a vesting option for 2019. Dodgers chairman and controlling owner Mark Walter recently voiced his support of Puig, expressing confidence the young outfielder would develop into a great player.