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"I’m very happy because the fans are wearing my T-shirt and saying my name," he said.
Even if some of his teammates aren’t quite sure how to pronounce it.
Count Skip Schumaker among them.
"There’s a different energy from the Cuban," the second baseman said. "He’s just been amazing for us and it feels like something is going to happen every time he comes up."
Puig’s five-tool skills have dazzled Dodgers fans, who cheer for his speed, power and strong throwing arm. His at-bats are must-see baseball, no matter what the score of the game. He’s a free swinger, whether he’s putting the ball in play, fouling it off or taking a strike.
"He’s up there with an intent to do damage," Dodgers pitcher Ted Lilly said.
Each time Puig comes to the plate, he pauses on the edge of the grass and uses the tip of his bat to draw a cross in the dirt.
"Just giving thanks to God for all the good things he’s doing for me," he said.
One week is too soon to tell whether Puig’s impact will be a lasting one.
"We’ll see how he does six or eight weeks into the season, see what kind of adjustments people make to him and he makes to them," Atlanta pitcher Tim Hudson said.
Rookies often slump when they face pitchers a second and third time during the season.Next Page >
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