Yasiel Puig has played with a level of flare and excitement ever since making his MLB debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2013. As seasons passed, his temperament and actions on the field steadily wore on his opponents and at times, teammates as well.
With some maturation on his part, Puig has better harnessed the passion with which he plays to have it reveal itself as more joyful enthusiasm than looking to disrespect anyone. However, he’s brushed up against the line some since the 2017 season when a ‘crotch chop’ has seemingly become a favorite celebration.
Hailing from the wrestling world, the celebration is one that’s both caused the Dodgers dugout to erupt in laughter and fans of opposing teams to jeer Puig more than they already did.
Seven games with the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Championship Series meant the act was on full display, and by both teams. After the Dodgers won Game 7, NLCS MVP Cody Bellinger said he believes the chopping movement can make the game more entertaining, via Pedro Moura of The Athletic:
Cody Bellinger, making sense, on crotch chops:
“Honestly, when Aguilar did it to him in Game 6, I was like, ‘All right, this is what makes the game fun.’ Now Puig did it today. I think the game needs more of that, to an extent — not as crazy as Puig, though.”
— Pedro Moura (@pedromoura) October 21, 2018
While Jesús Aguilar was able to use Puig’s celebration in jest as the Brewers staved off elimination in Game 7, it was Puig and the Dodgers who got the last laugh. With the Brewers still within a run, Puig clubbed a three-run homer off Jeremy Jeffress in the seventh inning of Game 7.
To no surprise, he celebrated around the bases, drawing the ire of the Miller Park crowd.