There is, without question, an element of luck involved with any Major League team’s run to the playoffs during any given season. The Los Angeles Dodgers received some good luck, then, when it comes to their sky-high aspirations in 2014 when they learned that the X-rays for both outfielder Yasiel Puig and shortstop Hanley Ramirez came back negative.
The concern with Puig was his left hand after he was hit by a pitch there this past weekend. As for Ramirez, he had to have his left wrist checked after also being hit by a pitch. With all these hit-by-pitch situations, you start to get a sense of why Clayton Kershaw was so cranky on Sunday Night Baseball and felt the need to hit Matt Holliday.
Both Puig and Ramirez should be able to return soon now that they know the injuries are nothing serious, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:
Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said before the game that the club was optimistic that neither player was seriously injured. He said Puig might be available for pinch-hitting Monday night. Mattingly indicated that Ramirez’s more recent injury was more painful than Puig’s.
With all of the uncertainty in the other two spots in the outfield, the Dodgers desperately need Puig to bring stability in right field. Yes, you just read the words “Puig” and “stability” in the same sentence, and no, it was not a mistake. For all of the antics and silly story lines that garner Puig national attention, he is their most valuable position player.
As for Ramirez, the Dodgers would obviously love to consistently have him in the lineup, but they have gotten used to being without him this season. For the long run, however, Ramirez is an important piece of the lineup that makes this team so dangerous. Good news for the Dodgers regarding both of these key players.