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Puig Disrespects MLB Great

Yaisel Puig has certainely made a name for himself since he made his major league debut on June 3rd. In only 34 games, Puig has eight homer, 19 RBIs, five stolen bases and is batting .407. In his first 100 at-bats, he had 44 hits, becoming the first player since Joe Dimaggio to complete this feat. He helped the Dodgers go 13-3 in their last 16 games, bringing them within 3.5 games of first place in the NL West. Puig is currently in second in the All-Star Final Vote, which still gives him a pretty good shot of grabbing that final spot on the All-Star roster. However, while Puig may be the breakout athlete of the year, he is certainly not the breakout sportsman.

Before Monday's game against the Diamondbacks at Chase Field, Puig was approached by Diamondbacks great Luis Gonzalez. The former All-Star walked right up to Puig, and began speaking to him in Spanish, introducing himself and telling Puig how he too has family roots in Cuba. Puig did not respond to Gonzo. He didn't even look up or acknowledge his presence! This show of disrespect towards a baseball great like Gonzo was surprising, because players usually know the different between a rivalry and respect, but Puig clearly has not been in the league long enough to learn that lesson.


Upon seeing this awkward encounter, Dodgers hitting coach Mark McGwire, who played on All-Star teams with Gonzalez, quickly approached Puig. McGwire reprimanded Puig and pointed out to the young star that he was ignoring a former All-Star, whose number is hanging inside the stadium they were currently standing in, who had a World Series-winning hit off Mariano Rivera, and who chased the single season home run record.


McGwire, whose legacy has been tarnished by PED usage, has had a negative connotation attached to his name. Personally, I have no respect for McGwire as a player, but I am happy that he noticed Puig's disrespect and tried to correct it. I now dislike him a little less. As for the players involved, neither Puig nor Gonzalez has commented on the confrontation.

Puig has a bright future is baseball ahead of him. However, he's going to need to learn show some respect if he wants other players to respect him. Another act like this could leave a lsating impression on the rest of the league.

How do you feel about Puig's actions? Was McGwire right in reprimanding the youngster? Share your thoughts. Comment below!

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