On June 11, Yasiel Puig‘s major-league career was nine games old. He was not endorsing sunglasses, he was not hanging out with Chris Brown at the Playboy mansion, and he wasn’t being sued by anybody in Cuba. To our knowledge.
Yet Puig had done more in those first nine games than some rookies never accomplish. He had four home runs, 10 RBIs, and a .471/.500/.882 slash line. His odds for winning the National League Rookie of the Year award were listed at 3 to 2 by online oddsmaker Bovada, better than his odds ever were for making the National League All-Star team (remember that controversy?), but lower than St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Shelby Miller, Bovada’s 1-to-1 NLROY favorite.
Bovada released its updated odds Tuesday and Puig was the new Rookie of the Year favorite at 4-to-7. Since June 11, Puig has cooled off at the plate, but by how much?
Puig is still batting .354/.412/.543 with seven homers and 15 RBIs since those first nine games. In 45 games since, you can project Puig’s numbers out over a full season, he’d still hit 26 home runs, steal 26 bases, and score 130 runs. That’s downright Mike Trout-like.
And that ignores his defense with plays like, well, keep reading:
• Here’s a GIF of last night’s Puig to Punto to Ellis putout.
• Some more from Bovada: Clayton Kershaw is the favorite to win the NL Cy Young Award at 2-to-3, but is not among the MVP candidates. Hyun-Jin Ryu’s odds of winning the Rookie of the Year award sit fifth at 20-to-1.
• Brian Wilson might be pitching for the Dodgers in a couple weeks, but for now he’s a minor league promotion (pitching for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga on Wednesday) and a pretty natural fit in that category.
• Jon Weisman dug up this interesting factoid: It’s been 85 starts since Kershaw was knocked out of a game (for reasons other than illness) before the fifth inning.
• Congratulations to the Boys and Girls Club of Venice baseball team that is competing at the RBI World Series in Minnesota. They beat a team from Santiago, Dominican Republic, 7-2 yesterday. They’re playing a team from Chicago this morning.
• The Korea Times reports that Ryu swag is going fast on eBay in Korea.
• PED guru Charles Yesalis on PEDs in baseball: “I think it’s still very, very premature to see how serious baseball really is. … I’ve been doing this over 30 years so I’ve earned my skepticism, whereas virtually none of the optimists have earned their right to be optimistic. … If we see more harsh punishment of real stars then I would start to conclude they are serious.”
• Ever hear of the band Wandai Wrection? Apparently they’re huge in Japan.
• I’m live chatting now (dailynews.com/ci_23782845) and listening to this song: