With the string of injuries showing no signs of letting up, the Dodgers placed OF Carl Crawford on the DL Monday and called up OF Yasiel Puig to take his spot on the roster. In his first major league game, Puig led off the game with a single, went 2-for-4 and closed the game with a spectacular double play from RF to preserve a 2-1 Dodger win.
Signed out of Cuba this past offseason, Puig was a revelation in Spring Training but the club sent him to AA Chatanooga to start the season. The Dodgers planned to keep him down for more seasoning, but then again, they didn’t plan to have a starting outfield of Scott Van Slyke in LF, Andre Ethier in CF and Puig in RF. With Crawford and Matt Kemp on the mend, Puig’s AA line of .313/.383/.599 looked like what the anemic Dodger offense needed.
It worked out Monday night as the 6-3/215-pounder blooped a single to start the game, then punched one past the glove of 1B Kyle Blanks into RF for a single in the 6th. But the play of the night for Puig came on defense.
With the Dodgers up 2-1, closer Brandon League came on in the top of the 9th. With one out, League walked Chris Denorfia. Blanks than hit a towering shot to RF that probably would have left Dodger Stadium in a day game. Puig caught it on the warning track, then showcased his impressive arm by firing in to first base to double off Denorfia to end the game.
With all that magic, the Dodgers improved to 24-32 and are still in last place in the NL west, 1 1/2 games behind fourth-place San Diego.