Back in December, Yasiel Puig was shockingly traded to the Cincinnati Reds as part of a seven-player deal. On the outside looking in, the Los Angeles Dodgers seemed crazy to let Puig go, but his recent comments prove they were right to do so.
The newest member of the Cincinnati Reds and his impending free agency has him ready to do something that he didn’t do in L.A., and that’s work hard.
“I never worked hard,” Puig told ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez. “Maybe that’s the reason why I didn’t have my better years.”
Puig signed a seven-year, $42-million contract with the Dodgers in 2012 and his impact was immediate as he finished second in National League Rookie of the Year voting in 2013 while appearing in his first All-Star Game the following season.
2016 brought upon a bunch of issues as he got demoted, but would recover to have two solid seasons in 2017 and 2018.
The 28-year-old has just one season to prove himself in Cincinnati before hitting free agency.
“The last couple years, I didn’t work hard because I still have a contract to go,” Puig added with a chuckle, according to Gonzalez. “Now I think I’ll work hard more than any year in my life.”
In six seasons with the Dodgers, Puig hit .279/.353/.478 with 108 home runs and 331 RBIs.