Yasiel Puig, the Dodgers young phenom was not in last night's lineup against the Marlins in Miami, a come from behind 6-4 win.
His manager Don Mattingly swore that it was a planned sit-down after struggling at the plate in his previous 11 at-bats.
Yet in the same breath, Mattingly admitted that Yasiel Puig, 22 was fined an undisclosed amount for being a half-hour late to the stadium on Tuesday. It had nothing to do with the benching Donnie Baseball said.
The day before, the Dodgers dropped their second game in a row, for the first time in 53 games and it came on the heels of Puig and teammates partying in South Beach until the wee hours after landing in Miami.
Tuesday, the Puig talk was about him being out of control, both on the field and off. Clubbing and trying to win the next day isn't necessarily a successful strategy, but it gave critics the opportunity to discuss the young Cuban refugee's baseball mistakes.
Missing the cut off man, swinging wildly at the plate, baserunning errors and more were dragged out for discussion. It was like the partying allowed the floodgates to open on the Yasiel Puig bitching fest.
Then in the eighth inning of last night's contest vs. the Marlins, Puig, who had come into the game earlier in a double switch move, took a pitch off Miami's reliever Dan Jennings and crushed it for a home run, giving the Dodgers the lead they never relinquished.
"Like always, I'm just trying to put a good swing on the ball and hit it as hard as I can," Puig said. "I knew I hit it hard, but you never know if it's going to be a home run."
Live by Puig, die by Puig? Maybe, but the team didn't get where it is without the pitching of Ryu, Kershaw and Greinke as well as the punch at the plate of Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez.
The kid is electric and is still must-see TV. Don't let the critics keep you from loving that.