Yasiel Puig called out by umpire Tim Welke after leaning toward second


Yasiel Puig has already made some boneheaded decisions on the base paths during his young career. The Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder was benched by Don Mattingly last season after he chose not to slide into second. Bad baserunning is also one of the reasons Mattingly was reportedly frustrated with Puig during spring training. But on Thursday night, Puig fell victim to a horrendous call.

During the first inning of a win over the Minnesota Twins, Puig reached first on an infield single. Twins second baseman Brian Dozier made a bad throw to first that got by Chris Colabello. Puig briefly considered taking second base, but he decided against it. His body never crossed into fair territory, but umpire Tim Welke apparently felt that Puig had made a motion toward second. Catcher Yosmil Pinto, who was backing up the play, applied the tag to Puig and he was called out.

According to MLB.com, Welker ruled that Puig leaned his upper body toward second. The play was a judgment call and therefore not reviewable.

Video of the play isn’t embeddable yet, but you can watch it here. The screenshot above tells you everything you need to know. That’s the closest Puig’s body got to making a move toward second. Had it been a different player, you have to wonder if Welke would have called him out. Awful, awful call.

H/T Big League Stew

Yasiel Puig drops fly ball, then guns out runner (GIF)

Yasiel Puig catchThe extremes you experience when dealing with Yasiel Puig are pretty incredible.

During the bottom of the second inning between the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers Thursday, Brandon Hicks hit a fly ball to right with one out and a man on first. Puig was there to field it and tried to do a casual catch, but he dropped the ball. Luckily he picked it up and recovered in time to throw Brandon Belt out at second for the second out.

And just to make things even more fun, Puig made a pretty spectacular catch for the third out of the inning:

Yasiel Puig: he can make the ordinary look difficult, and the difficult look ordinary.

Also see: Yasiel Puig flies out to right, pimps it like a home run (GIF)

Yasiel Puig flies out to right, pimps it like a home run (GIF)

Yasiel Puig may be the new version of Manny Being Manny.

Yasiel Puig celebratingThis dude gave us yet another unforgettable moment on Tuesday night.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants were in extra innings at AT&T Park and Puig was batting with one out, Hanley Ramirez on second, and the game tied at 2. Puig connected with a Yusmeiro Petit pitch and thought he had blasted a tie-breaking 2-run home run to right, so he began celebrating appropriately.

Unfortunately, it takes one heck of a shot to get it out to right field at AT&T Park, and Puig’s ball was caught for the second out, though Ramirez tagged up and went to third. Andre Ethier made the final out of the inning and the Giants went on to win the game in the bottom of the inning.

But at least in his mind, Puig had the game-winning home run. Or maybe he thought he hit it well and then didn’t run it out once he realized it would be an out.

If you liked that, you’ll love this GIF from the NLCS last year when Puig pimped a triple.

GIF via @carmenkiew

Yasiel Puig and Hyun-Jin Ryu had a tickle fight (GIF)

Yasiel-Puig-tickle-fightYou know how we know things are perfectly fine between Yasiel Puig and his Los Angeles Dodgers teammates? Because if they weren’t, I highly doubt he’d be engaging in tickle fights before the game.

A tickle fight between two grown men is the ultimate sign of friendship — right? Puig and Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu shared an intimate moment before LA took on the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday. We’ve seen a lot of weird stuff over the years, but this is near the top of the list.

Remember that meeting Puig supposedly called with his teammates a couple weeks ago to ask how he could improve? The first order of business must have been more tickle fights.

GIF via Cut 4

Yasiel Puig hurts thumb diving head first into first base (Video)

Yasiel Puig’s shaky season took another bad turn this weekend.

A day after being benched for showing up late to the stadium for the team’s home opener, Puig pulled off another boneheaded move.

Puig made a head-first dive into first base while trying to beat out an infield single in the third inning of Saturday’s Dodgers-Giants game. Though Puig was just trying to put in a maximum effort on the play, he and anyone else who dives into first doesn’t realize that they’re actually slowing themselves down … not to mention increasing their chances of getting hurt.

Puig showed his left thumb to Dodgers reporter Ramona Shelburne Sunday, and she said that it was swollen. So did manager Don Mattingly.

Puig is going for an MRI on his thumb, but Mattingly did say he might be good enough to pinch hit in Sunday’s game, so maybe it’s not too bad.

Bottom line: though we appreciate Puig’s effort and desire on the play, you have to be smarter than that and realize diving into first is a bad idea. You can see in the shot below how his left thumb got caught on the bag:

Yasiel Puig dive thumb

Yasiel Puig benched after arriving late to ballpark

Yasiel PuigYasiel Puig was a late scratch from the Los Angeles Dodgers’ lineup on Friday after he arrived late to the ballpark, according to various beat writers. He was replaced by Matt Kemp after reportedly showing up at about 10:15 a.m. while batting practice was already underway.

As of now, it is being reported that Puig was benched for his late arrival. Had the coaching staff known he was going to be tardy, you would think he would have been kept in the lineup. Apparently Puig thought he was supposed to be there at 10:00.

If this was any other player on the Dodgers, it probably wouldn’t be that big of a deal. However, Puig also showed up late for a game last year. The team joked about his tardiness on social media after that incident, but it would appear that Don Mattingly was not amused on Friday.

Unless Puig has a very valid excuse for why he was late, he’s going to give the media in LA even more reason to be all over him. He supposedly called a meeting with his coaches and teammates last week to ask how he can improve off the field. I doubt anyone advised him to take his time getting to the ballpark.

Yasiel Puig reportedly called team meeting to ask how he can improve

Yasiel PuigThe 2014 MLB season is barely underway, and already we have heard complaints about Yasiel Puig. The 23-year-old outfielder is playing in his first full season with the Los Angeles Dodgers this year after struggling in spring training and supposedly putting on a bunch of weight. According to general manager Ned Colletti, there is absolutely nothing to worry about.

There have been several reports over the past few days that the Dodgers reportedly held a meeting with Puig to clear the air. The news came in the wake of manager Don Mattingly voicing his frustrations with his young star after Puig struggled with a number of injuries — which may have been real or fake — during the team’s trip to Australia.

On Sunday, Colletti told MLB Network Radio that Puig is the one who called the meeting.

“He called it,” Colletti said, via the Orange County Register. “He wanted to know how he can get better and some of our veteran guys stood up and told him. And they told him how much they love him and how much they want him on the team and like having him here. But here are a couple of things … that we’d like you to be more focused on, get better at.”

Mattingly has not gone into detail about the meeting but described it as “a good meeting.” Colletti admitted that there is a maturation process with Puig but praised him for his enthusiasm.

“But he sought (the meeting) out the other day,” Colletti added. “He asked the question. He was searching for his peers to tell him what they thought he needed to do to get better and they did. So I see that as a good sign.”

If Colletti is telling the truth, that certainly is a positive sign from Puig. The media has painted him as a kid who does what he wants and follows his own set of rules, so seeking advice from teammates and coaches could show he is ready to grow up. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens next.