Home / Sports / The return of Yasiel Puig to Los Angeles brings mixed emotions.

The return of Yasiel Puig to Los Angeles brings mixed emotions.



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<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "LOS ANGELES -" Tests, one, two, three. .. ", said the man in & nbsp;Yasiel PuigThe chair. "Data-reactid =" 35 "> LOS ANGELES -" Tests, one, two, three … ", said the man in the chair of Yasiel Puig.

<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "This was Monday afternoon at Dodger Stadium. This was long before Yasiel Puig arrived at the stadium, long before his third batting was announced and in right field, generating a great ovation, long before he took his cap off the fans, long before he hit one of them. the & nbsp;Clayton KershawThe first sliders of the season on the fence in center field, and long before & nbsp;Joc Pederson& nbsp; he homered at the bottom of the ninth to finish his day. Long before that. "Data-reactid =" 36 "> This was Monday afternoon at Dodger Stadium, this was long before Yasiel Puig arrived at the stadium, long before his third batting was announced and in right field, getting one great ovation. Long before taking off the fans' cap, long before hitting one of Clayton Kershaw's first season runners on the fence in center field, and long before Joc Pederson hit a home run over his head at the end of the ninth to end your day … Much sooner than none of that.

About 40 minutes after the man in the chair of Yasiel Puig was supposed to be Yasiel Puig and still was not, the man who was not Yasiel Puig but who was in the chair said: "Yasiel is late."

This, of course, was neither news nor entirely unexpected.

"I can not tell you when he will be here," the man said.

This was received by a couple of dozens of reporters with soft laughter, the appropriate response for when the easy joke becomes absurdly easy, so much that it does not have to be done. It does not have to be thought. He just sits there with his pants down. Nobody smart enough to overcome that, or try.

"I do not know what else I can tell you, people," said the man in the chair about the man who was not in the chair. "Sorry."

<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "The & nbsp;Los Angeles Dodgers& nbsp; Monday night would be the host of & nbsp;Cincinnati Reds, to whom Yasiel Puig, among others, including & nbsp;Matt Kemp, & nbsp;had been negotiated in December. This, then, would be the first day of Puig in the stadium that was his home for six seasons, during six seasons, for the days of Teen Wolf and Wild Horse, for men lost and ignored by the coaches of the base, & nbsp ;by the push of Madison Bumgarner& nbsp; and & nbsp;Nick Hundley jawing, for the crotch cutlets and the movements of the tongue, for the schedules carried out and not. And, I do not know, maybe some bad things too. "Data-reactid =" 42 "> The Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday night would be the Cincinnati Reds, whom Yasiel Puig, among others, including Matt Kemp, had been In December, this would be Puig's first day in the stadium that was his home for six seasons, for six seasons, for the days of Teen Wolf and the nights of Wild Horse, for the lost men and the base coaches ignored., By the push of Madison Bumgarner and Nick Hundley, for the crotch chops and the tongue needles, by the established times and not, and, I do not know, maybe some bad things too.

Yasiel Puig made his return to Dodger Stadium on Monday night. (False images)

Then no-Yasiel Puig in the chair of Yasiel Puig, taking time to fill and not Yasiel Puig to fill it, said he had eaten a delicious tortilla with avocado and bacon in a place in Pasadena that morning, sat on the patio and everything. This was received with educated assent and subtle glances towards the door.

<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "Monday, & nbsp;Jackie Robinson would be remembered& nbsp; during the day, in 1947, he broke the color barrier of baseball, in this year he would have celebrated 100 years. His widow, Rachel and their children attended. And then the Dodgers would play a baseball game. In it, Clayton Kershaw would & nbsp;its first start of the season. The three-time Cy Young Award winner had been recovering from a shoulder pain. Kershaw vs. Puig looked like a reasonable theater for a Monday in mid-April. "Data-reactid =" 64 "> On Monday, Jackie Robinson would be remembered for the day, in 1947, broke the color barrier of baseball, this year he has turned 100. His widow, Rachel and their children attended. then the Dodgers would play a baseball game, in which Clayton Kershaw would make his first start of the season.The three-time Cy Young Award winner had been recovering from a shoulder pain.Kershaw vs. Puig seemed like a reasonable theater for a Monday in mid-April.

But, first, an old acquaintance, the Cuban gardener, the man who lit up so many nights against the San Gabriel mountains, who did not scare in October, who was just a little more than a few teammates, coaches and Managers could stomach, which was loved by the people who filled the seats and helped pay the bills in the old place. Those who worked with him swore it was a chore, sometimes more than they could handle. They made their complaints anonymously, where it was safe. And many of his transgressions were kept hidden, for the good of all.

The door opened. A woman burst into the room. Neither was she Yasiel Puig.

"He's in the building, on the way."

Arched eyebrows.

"No, I saw it in the flesh." He was changing his shirt.

The chair, his for an hour and nine minutes, was empty, except for the guy who had shared the story of the profana tortilla in the patio, which he expected.

"Hello," he announced in a low voice, almost sleepy, bewildered, without apology.

He wore a black shirt that honored Jackie Robinson and jeans. His shoes were red. His agents were in the corner. They had waited like the rest. He answered some questions in Spanish and then, in English, he was asked about his new city, how he liked there compared to, you know, here.

"Between Cincinnati and Los Angeles," Puig said, "there's a lot of space."

<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "They are going to dine a lot together there, he said. players speak to you. & nbsp;Joey votto& nbsp; He is a great man, he said. They have lunch together sometimes. Everyone works very hard, he said, which has driven him to work harder than ever, that's what he meant in spring training when he said he was going to work harder now that he's a Red and in his last season before free. agency. He appeared batting .163. The Reds were 5-9. "Data-reactid =" 78 "> They're going to dine a lot together there, he said, the other players talk to him, Joey Votto is a great man, he said, they have lunch together sometimes, everybody works very hard, he said, what he's driven to work harder than ever, what he meant in spring training when he said he was going to work harder now that he's a Red and in his last season before, free agency, he came out batting .163 The Reds were 5-9.

"That's one of the most beautiful things I have with my new team," said Puig. "This support, and being next to each other every day, and talking in the dressing room, on the flight, in the field, outside the field, we are always in contact, and that is what makes me feel so nostalgic." How do you think I feel about the Dodgers? "

<p class = "canvas-atom canvas-text Mb (1.0em) Mb (0) – sm Mt (0.8em) – sm" type = "text" content = "Maybe, maybe, maybe … he understands the Reds, like a franchise, are a bit more fragile than the Dodgers, it could have been an emotion to spin the Dodgers on their finger when the adults came out of their seats, so protective, that the Reds could really break. That, too, could have been emphasized even more, had he been standing outside the visitor's club on Monday afternoon, when his teammates, former Dodgers Kemp, & nbsp;Kyle Farmer& nbsp; and & nbsp;Alex Wood& nbsp; They were receiving their National League championship rings. Owner Mark Walter, President Stan Kasten, General Manager Andrew Friedman and Manager Dave Roberts knocked on the door with enough rings for everyone. "Data-reactid =" 80 "> Maybe, maybe, maybe … he understands the Reds, like a franchise, they're slightly more fragile than the Dodgers, it could have been exciting to spin the Dodgers on his finger when the adults they left their seats, so protective, that the Reds could break, and he felt bad about that, that could have been emphasized even more, if he had been standing outside the visitors' club house on Monday afternoon, when his ex Dodgers Kemp, Kyle Farmer and Alex Wood were getting their National League championship rings, owner Mark Walter, president Stan Kasten, general manager Andrew Friedman and manager Dave Roberts knocked on the door with enough rings for everyone.

Yasiel Puig hit a home run against former teammate Clayton Kershaw in the first inning of the Dodgers-Reds game on Monday. (False images)

"Yasiel did not make it," Roberts said.

The reason escaped him.

"I have not talked to him and his teammates did not know either," Roberts said.

Puig shrugged. He said the Dodgers had many alternative forms of delivery. They could have handed it to the visiting boy in the clubhouse. Or not. They would know where he was during the batting practice. Or not.

"You can give it to me in person," Puig said. Or give it to my locker. I do not care which one. "

He kept the sentimentality for the people who would surround him in the right field, those along the line and in the stands, those who would not get tired of him, who would allow his restlessness, without caring what time he showed up to work and I liked it when it was too loud and completely stubborn. Actually, they would be a bit conflicted when he appeared in the first inning, one out and a man at first base, and he hit a home run to the center field (the only run Kershaw would allow in seven innings). And he followed it with his eyes for too long a time. And he threw his bat aside. And he raised his right index finger towards the sky while rounding the first base. And held near the home plate with a lot of strangers.

When they applauded him, he said: "I could cry.

"I have not seen the games, I do not know how many people, how many fans have been coming here, but I am sure that when I played here there were more fans."

He was the last to leave the field on Monday night, the last to enter, the last to leave, when the Dodgers celebrated without him. He lowered his head and went to the dugout. He said he had felt "something special" on his first day back, that it made him "happy." That would have to do it. He is no longer one of them, and that seemed fine. With everyone.

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