October 16, 2013

Yasiel Puig..The New Jordany Valdespin?

Photo By Ride The Pine
There were some tense..probably not absolutely necessary moments during the fourth inning of last night's Game 4 of the National League Championship Series.  Cardinal's pitcher, Lance Lynn, buzzed young Dodger's stud, Yasiel Puig, with an inside pitch in what was likely retaliation for Puig's antics one night prior. 

In case you've been living under a rock, late in Game 3 Puig lined a ball down the right field line that he originally thought would leave the park.  He threw his hands into the air and watched the ball's flight.  Then promptly realized the ball would stay in the yard right before it caromed off the outfield wall.  Puig ended up with a stand up triple, pumping his fists in excitement when he got there.  Personally, I didn't have a problem with it (minus not running out of the box), but the St. Louis Cardinals did.  This initiated much debate yesterday that raged far and wide on the internet about celebratory antics.

If some of this sounds familiar to Mets fans, its because our own resident bonehead, Jordany Valdespin, was guilty of similar nonsense multiple times this season.  Actions, which go against the unwritten rules of baseball, often cause reactions, leading to harsh words, players getting hit by pitches and sometimes..brawls.  Puig's actions in Game 3 were likely unecessary, but they do provide good theater for the series moving forward.  Once again, I have no problem with them.

That leads me to ask myself why I didn't take offense with Puig's showboating when I certainly took offense to Valdespin's during the season.  The only answer I'm able to come up with is that Puig has the talent to back those actions up.  All Puig did this season was almost single handedly turn the Dodgers season around.  He's an absolute stud in all facets of the game and will be a household name for years to come.  Valdespin is none of those things.

Simply put..its a double standard.  Puig isn't the next Jordany Valdespin because he's actually really good at baseball.  Where Spins actions are a detriment to his team, Puig's are a motivator.  I would go as far as saying that Puig is probably the most exciting player I've seen since Jose Reyes and we all know how many team's took exception to Reyes "antics".  But that was okay by us, because Jose Reyes was really good at baseball, just like Yasiel Puig.

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