Culver City Observer -

The Speculation Was True: Dodgers Dump Puig

 

August 4, 2016

By Mitch Chortkoff

Sports Editor

Speculation about Yasiel Puig's future with the Dodgers was strong enough for me to write about it last week.

It turned out to be accurate.

When the Dodgers flew to Colorado Monday to begin a series against the Rockies Puig wasn't with the team.

The Dodgers had told him they would trade him by the Monday deadline or send him to the minor leagues, which they did Tuesday.

Sources told me the Dodgers decided they needed more production from their right field position.

On Monday the Dodgers acquired right fielder Josh Reddick from Oakland. Reddick is a more productive hitter than Puig and a good outfielder.

The downside is he'll be a free agent after the season. Pitcher Rich Hill, also acquired in the trade with Oakland, will similarly become a free agent after the season.

Opponents are likely to throw a lot of lefthanded pitchers at the Dodgers for the remainder of the season. Reddick is a lefthanded hitter as are Corey Seager, Adrian Gonzalez and Joc Pederson.

Reddick will be the starting right fielder most days with Pederson in center and Howie Kendrick in left. Trace Thompson, Kike Hernandez and Scott Van Slyke will provide relief.

The Dodgers didn't acquire an elite starting pitcher by the non waiver trading deadline and aren't sure if Clayton Kershaw will pitch in the playoffs.

If the Dodgers qualify for a one-game entrance into the playoffs without Kershaw they'll most likely be at the disadvantage of opposing a more heralded pitching opponent.

Puig, who hit 35 home runs in his rookie season, has been troubled with hamstring injuries in the last few years. His batting average has hovered around .260 this season and he's missed many games.

He's been on the disabled list recently but it was no coincidence he was in the lineup Sunday. That was to show potential trade partners that he was healthy.

Puig had three hits and drove in two runs in the Dodgers' 14-3 victory.

Adam Katz, Puig's agent, was told of the Dodgers' plans and said Puig was made aware of the situation. So Puig didn't come to Dodger Stadium Monday as instructed despite the fact a reporter wrote that he did.

The Dodgers signed Puig to a seven-year, $42 million contract in 2012.

"Yasiel did was he was supposed to do Monday,"said Dodger manager Dave Roberts,

The Dodgers signed Puig to a seven-year. $42 million contract in 2012 after he had starred in Cuba.

 

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