Getty Images

Yasiel Puig is in Dave Roberts’ doghouse once again


Yasiel Puig sat out of yesterday’s Dodgers victory over the Giants. Most people assumed it was to rest an ankle Puig said was gimpy after Saturday night’s game. Turns out not to be the case. Dave Roberts benched him, upset that he didn’t slide into second base on the caught-stealing that ended Saturday night’s game. A non-slide Puig said was due to feeling pain in his ankle.

J.P. Hoornstra’s story at the OC Register from yesterday, however, reveals that this is really about Roberts being displeased with Puig’s effort. Which is something of a surprise, as this season has featured an allegedly reformed Yasiel Puig. He’s stayed in the lineup, worked hard on defense, has avoided his usual number of boneheaded mistakes and has not appeared to raise the ire of his teammates as he has in year’s past.

As Hoornstra’s story makes clear, though, it has not been quite as smooth as portrayed, with Roberts saying “[t]here’s been some things that, when you look back, I’ve kept notes of . . . You have to have trust in all your players.”

The playoffs start for the Dodgers in a little over a week. Not the time of year that you’d want, or expect, there to be clubhouse discord. Whether this is a two-day nothingburger or something that lasts a bit longer remains to be seen.

Danny Duffy exits spring training game with left shoulder tightness

Danny Duffy
AP Images
Leave a comment

Royals’ Opening Day starter Danny Duffy weathered a minor scare during Saturday’s Cactus League game against the Diamondbacks. The left-hander was removed from his final spring training start after experiencing some left shoulder tightness in the second and third innings. No lasting damage appears to have been done — Duffy told reporters that he simply felt a slight ache, nothing more — and it looks like he’ll remain on track to open the season with the team next Thursday.

The 29-year-old southpaw is coming off one of his best performances to date. Despite losing a few weeks to an oblique strain and elbow soreness, he went 9-10 in 24 starts and finished the 2017 season with a 3.81 ERA, 2.5 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 over 146 1/3 innings. While Duffy entered camp with a clean bill of health, he struggled to execute against his spring training opponents and racked up 13 runs, four homers, seven walks and 11 strikeouts in 13 innings of Cactus League play.

The Royals are scheduled to kick off their home opener against the White Sox on Thursday, March 29 at 4:15 PM ET. Barring any further complications with his shoulder, Duffy will take the mound for the Royals, while James Shields is expected to make his first Opening Day appearance for the White Sox.