Yasiel Puig's first Triple-A game of his career was a successful one, as he went 2-for-4 and drove in three of the Oklahoma City Dodgers' four runs Sunday in a 6-4 loss to the Iowa Cubs in Des Moines, Iowa.Batting fifth and playing in right field, Puig grounded out on
Yasiel Puig's first Triple-A game of his career was a successful one, as he went 2-for-4 and drove in three of the Oklahoma City Dodgers' four runs Sunday in a 6-4 loss to the Iowa Cubs in Des Moines, Iowa.
Batting fifth and playing in right field, Puig grounded out on off-speed pitches in his first two at-bats, then singled and doubled to finish his day. His single came on a ball hit up the middle through the pitcher's legs, while his double landed just shy of the warning track in left-center field.
Puig, 25, played just 63 total games in the Minor Leagues (Class A Advanced Rancho Cucamonga and Double-A Chattanooga) before making his debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers on June 3, 2013.
He was seen as a sensational talent in his first one and a half big league seasons, but has seen his career OPS+ drop from 151 at the end of 2014 to just 93 as of Sunday. Puig was optioned to Triple-A on Tuesday after the Dodgers were unable to move the outfielder before the non-waiver Trade Deadline.
"The production from right field hasn't been at the same level it has been in past years so that was a spot we were looking at in particular," Dodgers general manager Farhan Zaidi said Tuesday. "We're obviously still evaluating Yasiel's health and whether he was a potential option to DL so we were talking through that. But ultimately we decided that move just made most sense with the roster we have and the way we plan to deploy our players and the lineups going forward."
Puig had been showing marked progress since returning from the disabled list before he was demoted. In 28 games (23 starts) since his return on June 21, Puig went 28-for-91 (.308) with a .390 OBP -- a full 107 points higher than his 2016 OPS before he went on the DL.
Matt Kelly is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @mattkellyMLB.