Despite speculation that the Los Angeles Dodgers might trade star outfielder Yasiel Puig for pitching help, the team has told him he will not be dealt, according to several media reports.
The trade stories surfaced amid more reports that there is continuing tension related to the 24-year-old Puig in the Dodgers clubhouse, something that first came to light during the 2013 season.
“(The Dodgers) are not having any conversations about Puig and are not interested in moving him,” an unidentified team official said.
Puig heard the talk and reportedly approached team officials to ask if he was being shopped around.
The rumors have had Puig headed possibly to the Cincinnati Reds, among other teams.
Puig, who was slowed by a hamstring injury earlier this season, is batting .259 with six home runs and 22 runs batted in, off the pace of his first two seasons in the major leagues.
“I wouldn’t give up on him now,” Dodgers co-owner Mark Walter told the Los Angeles Times. “Puig clearly, clearly has incredible potential and talent. I think he’s got a big heart and wants to play hard. So I think this will show up.
” … I think he’s just going to be a great player.”
The Dodgers, who lead the National League West, reportedly are looking for a starting pitcher and apparently are interested in Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies, Johnny Cueto of the Reds, Yovani Galldaro of the Texas Rangers, Jeff Samardzija of the Chicago White Sox, and David Price of the Detroit Tigers, if he becomes eligible.