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Pivotal Year Ahead For Yasiel Puig

Puig has had troubles staying on the field due to both injuries and off the field issues, but when in the lineup every day is one of the leagues top outfielders Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Puig has had troubles staying on the field due to both injuries and off the field issues, but when in the lineup every day is one of the leagues top outfielders
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Over the past three years, Yasiel Puig has perhaps grabbed more attention than anybody else in the game of baseball. This all started when he hit .319 with 19 homeruns as a rookie in 2013. Unfortunately, most of the attention Puig has attained is not the positive kind. Puig has grabbed negative headlines several times, including being pulled over for driving 110 MPH in a 70 MPH zone, benched and fined for being late to games, showy and careless defense,  rumors that Clayton Kershaw wanted him traded, and the most recent one being the investigation by Major League Baseball in a domestic violence incident. The injuries and personality issues have lead to some inconsistency and struggles to play up to his full ability, and his time with the Dodgers could be running short if he doesn't get his act together. There is no questioning Puig's ability to do just about anything on the baseball diamond, as he as quite often proved it with his cannon arm, great bat, and plus speed; the question is how much will Puig play in 2016. He could possibly be suspended by Major League baseball for the domestic incident, and you never know what else he will throw at you. The Dodgers need him to be healthy, and knock off the antics in 2016. Puig's career .294, 46 HR, 129 RBI attest to the player that he can be, but there is just so much uncertainty of what he will be. As before mentioned, Puig hit .319 with 19 HR in 2013, then in 2014 he followed it up with an average of .296 with 16 homeruns, and hit just .255 with 11 in 2015. You also do not know how many games you will get out of him, as he has played in 104, 148, and 79 in his first three seasons. There have been multiple rumors about trading Puig, and if early on he is struggling the Dodgers might be wise to trade him as quick as possible before he begins acting up again and teams are even more reluctant to take him. Handling Puig will be new manager Dave Roberts biggest challenge, and if he succeeds in doing so the Dodgers could have one of the best power bats in the game. If Puig stays on the field, and cuts down on the negative publicity, he could have a very long career in Los Angeles ahead of him. If Puig continues down the road that he has been the last few years, his days in Los Angeles are numbered. 




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