When you face those three guys, three of the best in all of baseball when it comes to missing bats and racking up strikeouts, it is understandable to strike out three times. Even if you are Yasiel Puig. Even if some people will enjoy your struggles in baseball’s showcase more than those of less controversial players. And even if you got a special haircut to mark the occasion. This is one case where three strikeouts is understandable.
Puig’s night started against Hernandez. King Felix did to Puig what he has done to hitters all season: kept him off balance by mixing speeds and cutting his fastball, ultimately getting him swinging at a 90 MPH offering down around his ankles.
Next it was Darvish, who got Puig on one of the nastiest offerings of the night. Darvish threw a bold pitch on 3-2, a front-door slider that broke in just enough. Darvish caught the inside corner and K’ed Puig looking.
Finally it was Scherzer who got Puig’s number with a dirty slider, thrown in a 3-2 count to get the swinging strike.
This play-by-play of Puig’s strikeouts is not meant to question his status as one of the great players in the game or celebrate his struggles. Not at all. It is just a reminder that for everything Puig does well, he will still have to make constant adjustments against the best pitchers in the game.
On Tuesday night three of the very best served up rude reminders of that fact.
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