On June 3rd, the baseball world was introduced to the Los Angeles Dodgers' new outfielder Yasiel Puig. Even before the final out had been recorded that night, the phenomenon of Puigmania had begun. The very next night, Puig went 4-5 with 2 home runs and drove in 5 runs. Incredible for a guy who had not been in the MLB more than 48 hours. And quite possibly if you have not heard of him yet, there's a good chance you have been living under a rock.
The story behind Puig is still one of mystery. He does not give great post-game interviews because well, the guy doesn't speak any English. Puig defected from Cuba around a year ago to become a Mexican citizen. Once he set up residency in Mexico, the Dodgers, who have been watching him since the 2008 Junior World Baseball Classic, signed him to the franchise on June 28th, 2012, almost one year ago. He started out playing a few stints in the minors as well as low A ball last year, and put up stellar numbers. So on June 3rd, and nine games under .500, the Dodgers called up their superstar. Why it took the last place Dodgers so long to bring him up? I'm not sure. But its better late than never. Puig is looking like the guy who is going to inject some life into this overpaid Dodger team. Against the Arizona Diamondbacks this year, Puig was hit in the face by Ian Kennedy. In the benches clearing brawl, Puig was one of the most animated ones out there. He as a love and passion for baseball and it was evident that night.
He is a superstar. He is breaking records left and right, he's this year's Bryce Harper/Mike Trout, but the only thing is he is a very quiet and reserved superstar. If he has something to say, it is always going to come to us through a translator, at least for now. He is very humble and appreciative to be in the MLB - something I wish Bryce Harper would learn.
The Phillies meet Yasiel Puig for the first time tonight at Dodger Stadium. I am excited to see him in action tonight and the rest of this weekend. There is only so much a SportsCenter highlight can give you before they go back to reliving the NBA finals (cheap joke but its true). The book on him is short, very short, so I fully expect him to keep up his torrid pace against us over the next four games. It will certainly be an interesting series.
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