Say what you will about Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig, but more times than not you’ll have difficulty spotting him without a smile as he mans right field or walks the dugout.
An exuberant 25-year-old, Puig enjoys playing the game he sought refuge from Cuba for and interacting with his teammates.
The behavior has come drawn scrutiny however, as it at times has suggested he isn’t taking matters seriously enough, or playing baseball “the right way.”
Puig’s public perception took another hit last November as he was involved in a fight outside a Miami bar.
The incident reportedly began after Blue Martini staff members interjected after Puig got physical with his sister, and subsequently escorted him outside.
However, evidence was not found to support the claim Puig struck his sister. Major League Baseball nonetheless launched an investigation into the scuffle. While it remains ongoing, Puig believes he’s essentially been cleared of any wrongdoing, according to Andy McCullough of the LA Times:
“I believe that was resolved a while back,” Puig said. “I mean, I was allowed to go to Cuba on that trip. So I can imagine that was already sorted out.”
Puig was part of a large contingent on MLB’s first trip to Cuba since 1999. On a personal level, it was Puig’s first time visiting the island since he defected.
A report earlier this month suggested MLB’s investigations into New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman, Colorado Rockies shortstop ose Reyes and Puig would conclude by March 1. However, commissioner Rob Manfred stated recently a timetable is not in place, nor will the process of reaching a conclusion be rushed.
The league’s new domestic violence policy allows Manfred to discipline players for “just cause.” Additionally, he can suspend a player with pay while legal proceedings are taking place.
Of the three aforementioned players, only Reyes was arrested and faces criminal charges after he allegedly shoved and grabbed his wife by her throat.