Yasiel Puig‘s recent move to center field is something that could prove to be integral to the Los Angeles Dodgers solving their outfield issues. Puig has shown a great deal of success early in the switch and has said that he prefers the position since it gives him more opportunity to run.
The ability that Puig has shown to quickly react on balls hit into the outfield and run them down shows that he is the perfect candidate to take over in center. The move has also opened the opportunity for Matt Kemp to move back into his original position of right field where he seems to be comfortable.
At this point, the biggest setback seems to be where the remaining outfielders will fit into the game with Kemp saying that he wants to be a center fielder, and Andre Ethier having to move positions for the second time this season if he is moved into right. Carl Crawford has shown some consistency playing left field, and it is unlikely that he will be moved going forward.
The Dodgers fifth regular outfielder Scott Van Slyke will more than likely find some playing time in a few different places with his ability to fit in anywhere, including first base on occasion. At this point, it seems as though Ethier has become the odd man out without having a consistent place to play as Crawford, Puig and Kemp begin to find success moving forward.
Either way, it seems as though putting Puig in center is what could be the full-time answer to the Dodgers’ problems in the outfield. He just needs to show that he can stay under control and not run over any other outfielders trying to make plays, and that he can take control of the outfield. To add to all the storylines moving forward, there has been a great deal of speculation about Kemp being traded, but it seems unlikely as he has five years and $118 million left on his contract.
Photo Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
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