With Yasiel Puig coming off a disappointing 2014 season and at the center of a Major League Baseball investigation, speculation grew over the winter that the Los Angeles Dodgers would look into trading the enigmatic outfielder.
However, president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman regularly voiced his support of Puig and called him one of the team’s ‘wild cards’ heading into the season. Manager Dave Roberts echoed a similar sentiment and went into the year with an open mindset amid a poor public perception of the 25-year-old outfielder.
While the Chicago White Sox reportedly inquired on Puig, the Dodgers instead shopped Andre Ethier in trade talks. Of course, nothing materialized and Ethier was projected to play a significant role for the Dodgers.
Puig is in the midst of overcoming a slow start this season since returning from the disabled list and according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Dodgers may be open to entertaining trade offers for him:
“Yes, they will, if they aren’t already. It’s always an interesting discussion around Puig. Is it the right time? Should they do it? Should they not? He’s hitting better since coming off the disabled list. Part of this will depend upon whether Andre Ethier returns and whether they can get another outfielder. This could be the time where they say, ‘OK, let’s package Puig and do something else, bring back some players in return and see where that goes.”
Roberts recently estimated Andre Ethier may return in early August. However, it should be noted Ethier’s recovery has been slower than expected thus far.
In 70 games this season, Puig is batting .257/.313/.390 with seven doubles, two triples, seven home runs, 28 RBIs, a .306 wOBA and 92 wRC+. He’s hitting .327/.406/.491 with three doubles, two home runs and eight RBIs in 17 games (15 starts) since coming off the DL.
Puig has otherwise remained healthy and avoided the hamstring issues that plagued him last season.