After informing Yasiel Puig that he would no longer be on the Dodgers active roster, he vanished into thin air.
The Los Angeles Dodgers and Yasiel Puig are on the strangest of footing.
After the team informed the 25-year-old outfielder that he would be sent down to the minor leagues, Puig reportedly threw a tantrum and left Dodger Stadium. This, reported by Ken Rosenthal, was later amended; Puig, according to his agent Adam Katz, simply went home because he was told he would be sent to Triple-A Oklahoma City tomorrow.
According to Fox Sports, Katz stated:
"The club informed me and the player understood clearly that they were making every to trade him and that if they were unable to come to terms with another club on a trade — and successful in acquiring another outfielder — that he likely would be demoted. My understanding is that transaction will happen tomorrow."
More from Call to the Pen
- Philadelphia Phillies, ready for a stretch run, bomb St. Louis Cardinals
- Philadelphia Phillies: The 4 players on the franchise’s Mount Rushmore
- Boston Red Sox fans should be upset over Mookie Betts’ comment
- Analyzing the Boston Red Sox trade for Dave Henderson and Spike Owen
- 2023 MLB postseason likely to have a strange look without Yankees, Red Sox, Cardinals
No matter what the actual story is, Puig’s current status with the Dodgers is troubling. Through 2018, Puig is owed over $17.4 million before even reaching eligibility for arbitration. Thus, any team that would have potentially matched up with the Dodgers would have to eat nearly $20 million (including the remaining salary from this season).
There is always the possibility of Puig turning around his career once he returns to the minors. The reality is that Yasiel Puig has not been terrible this year; this season, he has hit .260/.320/.386 with seven home runs and 34 RBI. Puig was injured for a large portion of this season; since returning from the disabled list on June 21st, he has hit .308 with an OPS of .830.
If the issues between Yasiel Puig and the Dodgers organization are as intense as they appear, there could be a third-way: Designating Puig for Assignment. This would place Puig on revokable waivers, then, once he is unclaimed (due to the size of his contract), he is eligible to be traded to another team. In this scenario, the team that receives Puig would have to eat a substantial chunk of his contract, and trade back players who are not on the current 40 man roster (or have cleared waivers themselves).
If Puig were to be DFA’d, they could attempt to trade him to one of the teams that failed to acquire offense at the non-waiver trade deadline (today). Could teams looking for position players, such as the Cleveland Indians, be keeping an eye on the Puig situation? If their scouts arrive in Oklahoma City in the near future, they could be.