Best National League Rookies: Sophomore Seasons

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Despite his occasional mental gaffes, Yasiel Puig emerged as one of the NL's best outfielder in 2013 Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Despite his occasional mental gaffes, Yasiel Puig emerged as one of the NL’s best outfielder in 2013 Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Yasiel Puig OF Los Angeles Dodgers

Despite finishing a distant second of Fernandez in the NL ROY voting, Puig had a rookie year that would have ordinarily won him the award.  The  Cuban outfielder hit .319 with 19 home runs and 42 RBI, while playing strong defense in right field.  He had a monstrous OPS of .925, a number that would have placed fifth in the NL if he had just 30 more at bats.  The Dodgers think so highly of the 23 year old, birthday is today, that they have made all three of their veteran outfielders Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier, and Carl Crawford available.

Puig possesses excellent bat speed, strong opposite field power, and an arm weaker only than the cannon Bryce Harper has for a right arm.  However, he does have a lot of question marks.  He has some of the worst plate discipline in the Major Leagues and constantly makes idiotic plays in the field and on the basepaths.  While I think he’ll have a decent major league career just relying on his natural athletic tools, he will definitely have some tough adjustment periods when pitchers figure out they don’t need to throw him strikes to get him out.

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