Do you remember the firestorm surrounding Yasiel Puig the day the Dodgers flew to Colorado and he was not on the plane? It turned out to be a false firestorm, but it burned white-hot on the net and social media.
In case you missed that incident, some reporter “broke the story” that Puig “stormed off” from the airport after being denied entrance to the team’s plane. That all turned out to be a false flag, because within hours, Puig’s agent released a statement that they knew well ahead of time that Puig would not be flying to Colorado. The man was nowhere near the airport. Thus, it was a bunk news story.
However, long before that was cleared up – Twitter happened. The networks flamed with people hurling judgement upon Puig (for something he didn’t do), and others who vehemently defended him (for something that needed no defense). Poor Yasiel does not even have to be directly involved to send baseball news junkies of all stripes into a lather.
Well, it’s happened again – and Yasiel is directly involved this time. Boy, is he ever. Have you seen the Snapchat videos he posted of some good ol’, AAA baseball fun?
Once again, writers and fans have taken sides, and they are posting their opinions all over the web and on a phone near you.
While the videos look to me like (mostly) harmless fun, I’ve got to place myself squarely on the line that says things do look a bit over the top for a guy who is supposed to be getting his batting in order, working on being a good teammate (in the dugout and the field especially), and working on being a “good employee”.
Puig hasn’t been in the minors a week and he’s howling into his Snapchat like they just won the World Series. I get it. The guy was having a good time with his team after the game. But his team lost and he went 0 for 3 on the day.
Yasiel, take it down a notch, brother. Is this what focusing on your game and getting serious about things looks like?
Puig’s working on a lot down in the minors. He won’t be joining the big club again until he’s matured as a player and as a man. That’s a 24-hour a day task. While many of us hope that Puig can pull it off, videos like this plant seeds of doubt in people’s heads.
Puig’s boss, Dodgers President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman, released this statement today:
“We are aware of what Yasiel posted on social media last night and while we are disappointed in his and some of our other players’ judgment, this is a matter we will address internally.”
They’re disappointed. Lots of Puig’s fans are disappointed as well. And the haters feel vindicated.
Unlike sources that leak B.S. stories to reporters who will print them as fact, this is something that Puig can control himself. He is in control of his actions in the batter’s box, and when he chooses to open his phone and his life to all of us. I trust Yasiel is watching video of his at bats or something similarly constructive as I type this, because I want his next viral video to be of him blasting a home run, and not dancing with a lampshade on his head.