Yasiel Puig makes presence known in postseason debut

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Batting fifth for just the second time as a major leaguer, Yasiel Puig went 2-for-3 and collected an outfield assist in his first postseason game as the Dodgers beat the Braves 6-1 on Thursday.

Puig had mostly been hitting at the top of the order, but manager Don Mattingly opted to drop him to the middle with Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier sidelined.

Puig got his first at-bat in the second, singled into center and then hustled his way to third on another single to center. He went on to score on Skip Schumaker’s sac fly, giving the Dodgers their first run.

The outfield assist came in the bottom of the second on a little fly to shallow right with Evan Gattis on first. Puig didn’t appear to intentionally deke Gattis, but with the way he kept his glove down to his side as he was coming in on the ball, Gattis apparently thought it was going to drop. It turned into an easy double play for the Dodgers.

Puig singled again in the third and was hit by a pitch in the fifth. He struck out in his last two at-bats in the sixth and ninth.

Giants making Brandon Belt available

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Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Giants have made first baseman Brandon Belt available in a trade and says that several teams have expressed interest in him.

Which is kind of weird, really.

Belt turns 31 early next season. He hit .253/.342/.414 with 14 homers over 112 games last year due to a knee injury and time lost to an appendectomy. He has a history of concussions and has averaged only 115 games over the last five seasons. Oh, and makes $48 million over the next three years.

Yes, he could be a very useful player if healthy, but taking on that kind of money, even a part of that money, when many very affordable first base/DH options are out there on the market makes little sense to me. Matt Adams. Justin Bour. Lucas Duda. As good as Belt? No, I don’t think so. But way cheaper and requiring less of a commitment.

But hey, rumors are rumors. Let a thousand flowers bloom.