On the eve of September, Dodgers officials continue to say they have not decided if outfielder Yasiel Puig will merit a call-up when the rosters expand. The team intends to recall catcher Austin Barnes along with relievers Luis Avilan, Louis Coleman and Josh Ravin. Avilan joined the team on Wednesday as the 26th man in a doubleheader against the Rockies.
Despite Puig’s encouraging performance in triple-A Oklahoma City and the Dodgers’ obvious need for right-handed hitters, the team remains wary of welcoming Puig back onto the roster. His behavior led, in part, to his demotion at the start of August.
“With Yasiel, [a call-up is] still a possibility,” Manager Dave Roberts said. “We’re still trying to figure out what’s best for him, and what’s best for us.”
Puig hit .348 in his first 19 games with Oklahoma City. Andrew Friedman, the team’s president of baseball operations, insisted the reports on Puig’s behavior have been positive. But there are still questions about his ability to handle a part-time spot in the majors.
The Dodgers could require Puig in a more prominent role if recently acquired Josh Reddick continues to struggle at the plate. Reddick notched two hits on Wednesday to raise his average as a Dodger to .161. He also recorded his first RBI for the club.
Scott Van Slyke will have season-ending surgery on his right wrist on Thursday. The Dodgers had hoped Van Slyke could aid the offense against left-handed pitchers in 2016, but he batted .225 with one homer in 113 plate appearances.