With injuries to three of the New York Yankees key outfielders, could Yasiel Puig make sense for the club on a one-year deal?
After a week and a half of what seemed like hundreds of tests, we now know what is wrong with Aaron Judge. He has a stress fracture of his first right rib and we don’t know what will happen. Surgery is an option but there is still a chance he can avoid it. With Stanton also hurt, the Yankees could use another outfielder, one that has proven himself at this level. Here are three reasons why the Yankees should sign Yasiel Puig.
Proven and solid hitter
Puig has been a solid hitter since he came into the league in 2013. In his seven year career so far, Puig averages a slash line of .277/.348/.475 while hitting on average 25 home runs and driving in 75 RBI’S. Since 2017 Puig’s power numbers have gone up. He has not hit less than 23 home runs in a season since 2017. Puig is also a solid OBP guy and since 2017 he has had an on-base of at least .327 in each year. With Puig, you know what you will be getting with his bat and while he isn’t Aaron Judge, he would be a great fill-in for however long is needed.
Decent fielder that plays all three outfield positions
When Puig was coming up in the minors everyone knew that he had an absolute cannon for an arm. With the loss of Aaron Judge for who knows how long, The Yankees could use someone with a cannon in right. Puig’s best position, in terms of DRS, is right field where he has a total of 28 DRS over 7 years. His best season was 2017 where he had a DRS of 14. Puig also has the ability to play center and left, which would come in handy if anyone else went down and he needed to play somewhere else.
Thrives under pressure
There is no question that Puig can handle the pressure of the bright lights, he played his first six seasons with the Dodgers. It was must-watch TV when Puig made his debut and Dodger fans had high expectations for him. Puig is the type of player that needs pressure in order to not fall apart. When he played with the Reds in the first half of 2019, it happened to be his worst season in terms of on base. Once he was traded to the Indians he seemed to rediscover that fire. But who can forget his huge home run against the Red Sox in the 2018 World Series?
Puig is at his best when the lights are the brightest and the pressure is at its peak. Not only will Puig have no issues handling New York, I truly think it will bring out the best in him.
With how injury-prone the Yankees seem to be, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to take a flyer on Puig. Maybe the bright lights of New York will bring out that fire that brought out the best in him.