Yasiel Puig
Yasiel Puig
30-Year-Old OutfielderOF
 Free Agent  
Free Agent
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Puig entered free agency at the end of the 2019 campaign and was unable to secure a contract before spring training was suspended in March, though he eventually reached a deal with the Braves in July. However, that deal quickly fell through after he tested positive for COVID-19, and his market appeared relatively quiet the rest of the season. The 30-year-old had a .267/.327/.458 slash line with 24 homers, 84 RBI and 19 stolen bases between the Indians and Reds in 2019, though his defense remained subpar despite his power arm. Coming off a lost 2020 season, Puig is a question mark for both big-league teams and fantasy managers alike, so his value and role could vary significantly depending on where he ends up. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
#328
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $9.7 million contract with the Reds in January of 2019. Traded to the Indians in July of 2019.
Playing in DWL
OFFree Agent  
December 6, 2020
Puig agreed to a contract Saturday with Dominican Winter League club Tores del Este, Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports.
ANALYSIS
Puig ended up sitting out the entire 2020 campaign after the contract he agreed to with the Braves in late July fell through following his positive test for COVID-19. The outfielder looks to be healthy again now that he's competing in the Dominican Republic, where he'll presumably be aiming to showcase himself to MLB teams this winter. The 29-year-old slashed .267/.327/.458 with 24 home runs and 19 stolen bases in his last full season in the majors in 2019.
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Batting Stats
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2019
2018
2017
2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 MLB Game Log
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Minor League Game Log
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2018
 
 
+18%
OPS vs RHP
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
+1%
OPS vs LHP
2018
 
 
+47%
OPS vs RHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2018vs Left .709 307 33 9 38 10 .244 .313 .396
Since 2018vs Right .837 748 103 38 109 24 .276 .333 .504
2020vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Left .791 154 17 5 23 3 .279 .357 .434
2019vs Right .783 457 59 19 61 16 .263 .317 .465
2018vs Left .628 153 16 4 15 7 .209 .268 .360
2018vs Right .921 291 44 19 48 8 .297 .357 .564
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2018
 
 
+10%
OPS on Road
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
+9%
OPS at Home
2018
 
 
+41%
OPS on Road
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2018Home .761 527 56 16 70 15 .272 .330 .430
Since 2018Away .840 528 80 31 77 19 .261 .324 .516
2020Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Home .818 300 31 10 42 9 .295 .357 .461
2019Away .753 311 45 14 42 10 .239 .299 .454
2018Home .686 227 25 6 28 6 .243 .295 .390
2018Away .965 217 35 17 35 9 .292 .359 .605
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Yasiel Puig
Bernie on the Scene: NL Rookies of Consequence
13 days ago
Bernie Pleskoff analyzes National League rookies with fantasy relevance, including Dylan Carlson, who should get a full season of at-bats as the Cardinals right fielder.
The Z Files: Outfield Studs to Duds
59 days ago
Todd Zola wraps up his positional tiers with the outfield, and finds he can't quit Marcell Ozuna even without knowing what uniform he'll be wearing in 2021.
Super Early Top 400 for 2021
145 days ago
James Anderson releases his super early top 400 redraft rankings, which features a trio of Atlanta hitters in the top 20.
MLB Barometer: Final Risers & Fallers
160 days ago
Erik Halterman looks at the biggest over- and underachievers in 2020 relative to their preseason ADP, and finds a couple of Cleveland players standing out from the early-round pack.
Regan's Rumblings: Who’s Caught My Eye?
208 days ago
Dave Regan talks notable players like Kansas City’s Jorge Soler, who seems to be proving his 2019 season wasn’t a fluke, with his five homers already this year.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
Puig is a free agent this winter, and it will be interesting to see who will be his fourth employer since the end of the 2018 season. Ideally, he lands in the American League where his subpar defense can be marginalized and his offensive potential can be maximized. Sure, he can throw the ball well, but the jumps on the baseball aren't great. Offensively, the athleticism is always on full display as he teases 20-20 potential every year, but has not yet made it there, falling one steal short last year. He's not Khris Davis consistent, but he's close as he has hit between .263 and .267 the past four seasons and has had a remarkably stable skill set the past few years. It was disappointing to see him add just one homer to his 2018 number with all the extra playing time, but his power numbers tanked after the trade to Cleveland at the deadline and he hit just two home runs over his final 207 plate appearances.
Puig may never realize the potential teased when he burst onto the scene in 2013, but if the past two seasons are an indication, his skills have stabilized to the point where we can bank on him being a plus contributor, especially in power. From a skills perspective, 2018 mirrored 2017, albeit with 126 fewer PA. Puig missed almost two weeks early with an ankle contusion, then nearly three weeks midseason with an oblique strain. His historical reverse splits were more extreme than normal (.921 vs. RHP, .628 vs. LHP). He hasn't actually accrued ample plate appearances to own the splits, but it certainly appears safe to say he hits RHP better than LHP. Following an offseason trade to Cincinnati, Puig has been reunited with hitting coach Turner Ward and now has a clear path to a true everyday role in 2019, but he should realistically be drafted for his floor as opposed to the perceived "sky is the limit" ceiling he had when he first came over from Cuba.
Puig's tumultuous 2016 put him on thin ice, but he improved his attitude and patience at the plate en route to a career-best home run total and BB/K (0.64). The Cuban import nearly doubled his walk rate (to 11.2 percent) and finally tapped into the type of power that many thought he had but which had yet to manifest itself. He fell just two homers shy of 30 despite a 48.1 percent groundball rate. Puig scuffled against lefties (.183/.317/.275) and has a reverse platoon split for his career, but he's still historically hit lefties at an above-average level, so there may be room for batting-average growth. His near Gold Glove defense should keep him as a starter entering his contract year, and his run and RBI totals could improve with a more regular spot in the heart of the batting order -- the majority of his at-bats (204) came from the eight hole last season.
Either you believe in Puig or you don't. Both sides have valid cases. There's no denying his raw athletic ability, but it's also perfectly fair to question Puig's desire to get the most out of it. Last season was tumultuous for the Cuban native, beginning in the spring, when he avoided a suspension stemming from alleged domestic violence charges during a November 2015 bar fight. Puig was unable to get in a groove, perhaps a result of lingering left hamstring soreness that eventually resulted in a June DL stint. After returning, the struggles continued. That and a lack of hustle culminated in a minor league demotion. Puig responded well with an eye-popping slash line at Triple-A Oklahoma City, yet he was still placed on waivers. After being claimed and pulled back, Puig returned to the bigs when rosters expanded, hitting a modest .281 with four homers and 11 RBI. The good news for the believers is the price to own has dropped. The bad news is playing time isn't a sure thing. Invest at your own peril.
Coming off a strong .296/.382/.480 first full season, expectations were high for Puig last year, but hamstring injuries limited the mercurial outfielder to just 282 at-bats and a .255/.322/.436 slash line. One of the more divisive players in the game at the tender age of 25, Puig's actions on and off the field have come into question, but his upside between the lines remains enormous. Unlike some Cuban sluggers, Puig has a decent eye at the plate (9.5% career BB%), he runs hard and has a cannon of an arm. His .192 career ISO is solid, but his raw talent seems to call for much more. He hasn't always been in the best shape, and while has a lot to prove in 2016, it may be worth gambling on his considerable upside. He should be the team's Opening Day right fielder, and with an offseason dedicating to getting himself in tip-top shape, Puig could eventually provide first-round fantasy value.
After bursting onto the scene as a rookie in 2013, expectations were sky high for Puig in his second big league campaign. Somehow, there was an air of disappointment in what turned out to be a 5.1-fWAR season. Even with a variety of ailments that included thumb, head, hip, hand, and hamstring injuries, Puig logged 148 games last season, but it's fair to wonder if his reduced power was as much the function of playing at less than full health as it was the result of the league figuring out how to pitch to him. Overall, Puig showed improved plate discipline (10.5% BB%, 19.4% K%), but a late-September slump carried over to the postseason and Puig was placed on the bench for the Dodgers' season-ending loss to the Cardinals after he struck out eight times over 12 at-bats to begin the NLDS. Just 24, Puig's ceiling remains very high, but he still shows the occasional lack of polish despite regular flashes of brilliance that suggest he'll be an MVP candidate in the near future.
Puig electrified the team and the city from Day 1 of his big league debut June 3, knocking two hits in his debut and two home runs in Game 2. He had his ups and downs as pitchers started adapting to his free-swinging ways, but Puig also adapted himself, taking more pitches as the season wore on. The end result was a .319/.391/.534 slash line that included 19 homers and 11 stolen bases in 382 at-bats. He's certainly a work-in-progress, but coming off a .925 OPS rookie season, the sky appears to be the limit.
The Dodgers swooped in with $42 million just before Major League Baseball put a cap on international spending and grabbed Puig, the latest Cuban buzz-worthy young outfielder. He appeared in 23 games in the Dodgers' minor league system and delivered a 1.076 OPS with five homers and eight steals in just 82 at-bats. It's possible, with the team's projected outfield all signed through at least 2017, that the team will need to make a trade (Andre Ethier?) to free up a spot for Puig, but that can be decided later. For 2013, expect Puig to open up in Double-A.
More Fantasy News
Braves deal called off
OFFree Agent  
Illness
July 17, 2020
Puig's reported deal with the Braves has been scrapped after the outfielder tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Tests positive for COVID-19
OFAtlanta Braves  
Illness
July 17, 2020
Puig revealed on his personal Twitter page Friday that he'd tested positive for COVID-19.
ANALYSIS
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Signs with Braves
OFAtlanta Braves  
July 14, 2020
Puig signed with the Braves on Tuesday, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports.
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Draws interest from Orioles
OFFree Agent  
July 11, 2020
Puig has drawn interest from the Orioles, who have made at least one contract offer, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports.
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Giants still interested
OFFree Agent  
June 24, 2020
The Giants are among the teams expected to be in the mix to sign Puig when MLB lifts its freeze on transactions Friday, Jim Bowden of The Athletic reports.
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