“According to sources, some major league teams are showing interest in Puig,” Francis Romero of the American Baseball Reporters Association said on social media on the 9th (Korea time). “Puig’s position has changed a lot over the past month. The Tampa Bay Rays are one of the teams paying attention to Puig.”
If Puig takes the major league stage again, it will be the first time in five years since 2019.
Puig, who made his big league debut with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2013, garnered great attention by posting a batting average of 0.319 with 19 homers, 42 RBIs, and 11 stolen bases with an OPS of 0.925. Puig, who immediately jumped to the starting lineup, also won a successful victory in 2014 by recording a batting average of 0.296 with 16 homers, 69 RBIs, and 11 stolen bases with an OPS of 0.862 in 148 games.
However, Puig has since become a trouble maker by frequently making rumors due to his insincere attitude and short-tempered personality. Eventually, Puig, who left the Dodgers for the last time in 2018, played for the Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians (now Guardians) in 2019 and recorded a batting average of 0.267 with 24 home runs and 84 RBIs with an OPS of 0.785 in 149 games, and his big league career was cut off.
Branded as a “troublemaker,” Puig was no longer called by Major League Baseball teams. Eventually, Puig, who continued his career in the Dominican Winter League and the Mexican League, signed a contract with the Kiwoom Heroes in 2022 and made it to the Korean stage.
Contrary to concerns, Puig managed to adapt himself to the KBO League without causing any major problems. Puig, who had a batting average of 0.277 with 21 homers and 73 RBIs in 126 games, contributed greatly to Kiwoom’s winning the runner-up position in the Korean Series, and his contract seemed to be renewed smoothly. However, allegations of illegal sports gambling and perjury surfaced suddenly, and his return to the KBO League was in vain.
Looking for a new team, Puig displayed his solid performance this winter by hitting hard with a batting average of 0.360 with 12 homers and 32 RBIs in 49 games in the Dominican and Venezuelan winter leagues. Major League teams are re-considering recruiting “bad boy” Puig to strengthen their offense.
Meanwhile, Venezuelan sports commentator Bernabe Perez said on his SNS, “According to Tampa Bay scout Juan Francisco Castillo, the Tampa Bay club signed a minor contract with Puig and invited him to the spring camp.” Attention is focusing on whether the “wild horse” Puig will be able to see him sprint back to the Major League ground soon.