Daily Distractions: Yasiel Puig jersey sales already rank 10th in 2013.

A list of the most popular jersey sales on MLB.com/shop was released today:

1. Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants
2. Mariano Rivera, New York Yankees
3. Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals
4. David Wright, New York Mets
5. Matt Harvey, New York Mets
6. Bryce Harper, Washington Nationals
7. Derek Jeter, New York Yankees
8. Manny Machado, Baltimore Orioles
9. Mike Trout, LA Angels of Anaheim
10. Yasiel Puig, Los Angeles Dodgers
11. Hyun-Jin Ryu, Los Angeles Dodgers
12. Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers
13. Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox
14. Matt Kemp, Los Angeles Dodgers
15. Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers

Yasiel PuigIndeed, a player who began the season in Double-A has sold more jerseys than all but nine players through early July.

More on Puig in a bit. Let’s not overlook that Ryu jersey sales rank 11th, only Puig separating Ryu from the buzz-worthy title of “Dodgers rookie sensation.” And that four Dodgers (with the cross-cultural appeal that comes with representing four different ethnic groups) rank among the top 15.

Onto the bullet points:

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Report: Ratings for Monday’s Dodgers-Diamondbacks game set season high.

The Dodgers’ 6-1 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday drew a 4.1 rating on Fox Sports Prime Ticket in the Los Angeles market, according to Sports Media Watch. That’s a season high and the network’s best Dodgers rating since 2009. The Dodgers’ season average has improved by 6 percent since mid-June.

The hype surrounding rookie right fielder Yasiel Puig is certainly a factor in the Dodgers’ improved ratings. Monday also held the intrigue of a rematch between two teams who brawled in their last series, and are currently first and second in their division.

All-Star manager Bruce Bochy would have a ‘hard time picking somebody’ like Yasiel Puig.

Bruce Bochy
Bruce Bochy, the manager of this year’s National League All-Star team, would have a hard time picking Yasiel Puig on the merits of a six-week major-league career.

The San Francisco Giants manager explained why this afternoon on the MLB Network Radio channel on SiriusXM with hosts Jim Bowden and Casey Stern:
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Time Warner, Fox teaming up to broadcast five Dodgers games in Spanish.

Time Warner Cable announced it will carry Spanish-language telecasts of five Dodgers games this season beginning tomorrow night.

Fox Sports Networks will produce the games for distribution by local Time Warner Cable systems to its customers, which will air locally on channel 858.

The Dodgers’ broadcast team will feature Jorge Jarrin on play-by-play and longtime coach Manny Mota providing the analysis and commentary.

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Dodgers telecasts migrating tonight, Friday.

Tonight’s Dodgers-Padres game will not air on Prime Ticket because Fox is airing “Clippers Live” at 7, followed by a Clippers-Timberwolves game at 7:30. The Clippers are bumping the Dodgers again on Friday – the Clippers have a 5 p.m. game in New Orleans, the Dodgers a 6:40 p.m. game in Phoenix – but right now it appears that game is scheduled to air on tape delay at 8 p.m.

In the meantime, here’s a list of channels that will be showing the games, as well as the pre- and post-game shows, live:

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Report: Dodger Stadium will host NHL game in 2014.

Dodger Stadium renovation

Dodger Stadium will host a hockey game before it hosts its next All-Star Game, according to a report Sunday on TheFourthPeriod.com.

The NHL was finalizing plans to bring a regular-season game to the Dodgers’ newly renovated home field next year, according to the report, which was then confirmed on Twitter by NHL agent Allan Walsh.

According to TFP’s David Pagnotta,

… the parties involved — the NHL, the Kings, the stadium — are still putting the finishing touches on the details, but it’s “basically a done deal.”

For Los Angeles, it’ll mark the first regular-season game to occur outdoors in a non-traditional hockey climate. The Kings’ opponent is yet to be determined.

There is some belief that the NHL will stage both outdoor games on the same day, possibly on Hockey Day in America, with the game in the East (likely NYC, around 1pm ET) kicking things off, followed by the game at Dodger Stadium (possibly starting at 1pm PT, 4pm ET).

 Dodgers president Stan Kasten declined comment on the report Sunday.

Daily Distractions: Time to forget about Robinson Cano?

Robinson Cano rocks a Cleveland Cavaliers sweater while bro-hugging Jay-Z at a Cavs playoff game in 2009. C.C. Sabathia (right) photo-bombs. Which of them will be Yankees in 2013?    (Getty Images)

If Robinson Cano isn’t the Dodgers’ second baseman next year, blame Jay-Z. A little.

More accurately, you might blame Cano for switching agents this week, from Boras Corp. to the brand-new Roc Nation Sports Agency, a Jay-Z creation. Cano is Roc Nation’s first client.

Jay-Z is not Cano’s agent — in fact, Cano will be represented by CAA’s Brodie Van Wagenen. CAA and Roc Nation have some sort of a working agreement and it’s unclear how the particulars of that arrangement shake out. Regardless, here’s what we know:

1. Jay-Z is a Yankees fan who would probably like to see his team re-sign its best player.
2. CAA is less likely to usher its star clients onto the free-agent market than Boras.

FoxSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal asked Van Wagenen the question on every Dodger fan’s mind: Will Cano hit free agency when his contract expires at the end of the season, or will he re-sign with the Yankees before then?

Cano, who is eligible for free agency at the end of the season, enjoys playing for the Yankees and is open to staying with the club.

“New York and Yankees fans have been great for Robbie,” Van Wagenen said. “He has flourished in pinstripes and loved his time in the city. His primary focus is continuing to represent that brand and help his team win games.

“Is there an opening for him to explore a contract? You know us. We’re not going to talk publicly about that. We certain will continue to work diligently to help him achieve his goals both on and off the field.”

There isn’t much to read into there, but it’s probably time to line up a Plan B in your fantasy 2014 Dodgers lineup. The Dodgers hold a club option for their current second baseman and number-two hitter, Mark Ellis, once his contract expires after this season. Ellis turns 36 in June. His age, and his career .265/.331/.394 slash line, are why no one is clamoring for the Dodgers to exercise that option — even if Ellis is the team’s best defensive infielder.
As for other second basemen who could become free agents at the end of the season, the Rays hold an option on Ben Zobrist; Chase Utley will be 35; Brian Roberts will be 36; and there’s always Nick Punto and Skip Schumaker. (Full list courtesy of MLBTradeRumors.com).
Some bullet points:
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Dodgers turn to Hollywood for their Opening Day introduction video.

Dodgers logoAfter Tommy Lasorda told Maury Wills to launch a ball from Arizona to California, the Dodgers’ pregame video took a celebrity turn. An ecletic group of sports and entertainment figures appeared on the new high-definition video screens to herald the new season.

Below is a list of all everyone who did or said something Dodgers-related in the video. Who did you recognize? Who would you have left out? Discuss:
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