Google “Puig will be a superstar” and click on the first result that comes up.
Go ahead, it’ll only take a second. I’ll wait.
That article came out shortly after Yasiel Puig signed with the Dodgers, but still less than a year ago. Either it took a while for those words to sink in or people tend to believe something when they see it. Or both. Danny Knobler of CBSsports.com caught up with Puig’s first manager in the United States, Matt Martin:
He was skeptical, until he saw Puig play. Then he tried to describe to everyone else what he was seeing — what we’ve all seen this week.
He told his bosses that Puig had better raw five-tool talent than Matt Kemp. They didn’t want to believe him. He searched his past and baseball’s present for other comparables, but he couldn’t find one that told the story.
“I always preface this by saying I don’t know how his career is going to turn out,” said Martin, who has since left the Dodgers and taken a job with the Orioles. “But on God-given ability going in, it’s like nothing I’ve ever seen.”
Martin kept thinking, and finally he hit on it.
“I said, ‘He’s Adrian Peterson.’ That’s how much God-given ability this guy has,” Martin said. “That’s the comparison I had to give. He’s Adrian Peterson.”
A numerical analysis of Puig arrived today from FanGraphs. The conclusion:
Seven days in, Yasiel Puig looks like a star in the making. Maybe his approach will eventually become a problem, but it took opposing pitchers seven years to figure out how to get Josh Hamilton out. He might not walk much, but he looks like a guy who could be so good at everything else that it won’t matter.
Update: Puig was named the National League Player of the Week on Monday.
Some more bullet points for a Monday morning:
• Check out a photo gallery from the Old Timers’ Game on Saturday.
• Allen Craig has moved into the top five vote-getters among National League first basemen. Adrian Gonzalez has dropped out. Matt Kemp dropped out of the top 15 outfielders too, so it looks like Clayton Kershaw is the Dodgers’ only chance of having a starter in the All-Star game next month.
• BaseballProspectus.com rates the worst draft ever.
• Can you imagine your manager tweeting this?
Tweet me your most inspirational quote and I will select one every day, post in the clubhouse and send the winner a Friend-O-Rays t-shirt.
• What do Moe, Apu and Chief Wiggum have in common? All three announced a Dodgers starting lineup before you did.
• The Dodgers’ injury woes and organizational depth combined to give them exactly three players in Sunday’s starting lineup who were drafted or developed by the team: Puig, Scott Van Slyke and Matt Magill.
• On the bright side, the sun came out today. Here’s “Cup Half Full” by the Stepkids: