We’ve reached the top three Dodger homeruns of 2013. These last three are the exclamation points of the season, and they are each truly memorable moments amongst the rich historic tapestry of Dodger baseball. Yasiel Puig celebrated his rookie season and Dodger debut by bursting on to the scene with much fireworks, laser throws, a controversial all-out style, and five tools to boot. Yasiel Puig was the igniter which jumpstarted this Dodger team and fueled them to make it all the way to the NLCS. Puig’s dramatic flair came to a pinnacle against their future NLDS competitor, the Braves, as the Cuban dynamo proceeded to ignite Dodger Stadium in grand style.
3. Yasiel Puig Hits First Career Grand Slam Versus Atlanta Braves on Thursday June, 6, 2013.
The 22-year old Puig had just made his Major League debut three days prior, but the soon-to-be outfielder who would become a household name, won Dodger fans over with one grand swing of the bat that night at Chavez Ravine. The tale of Yasiel Puig began with a cannon armed throw in his Dodger debut, and it continued to grow as the youngster proceeded to hit walk-off homeruns and grand slams against teams around the league.
Puig’s beautiful slam came in the eighth inning with one out when he connected on the first pitch he saw, a 81-mph slider, from reliever Cory Gearrin. Puig’s hot start included 3 homeruns and 9 RBIs since he made his MLB debut just a few days prior that Monday.
Zack Greinke pitched a great game by going seven scoreless innings and allowing four hits for the win. The Dodgers scored their first run in the bottom of the second when Scott Van Slyke led off with a single, Andre Ethier doubled, and SVS scored on a groundout by Skip Schumaker.
The Dodgers were still well under .500 at that time in June, but with the addition of Yasiel Puig they would soon begin their remarkable comeback to win the division from the mires of last place. Puig’s grand slam really let the baseball world know that the Dodgers were to be a force to be reckoned with, and Puig is a future superstar.
Yasiel Puig played in 104 games for the Dodgers in 2013. He hit .319/.391/.534 with 19 homeruns, 42 RBIs, 97 strikeouts, and 36 walks. He also stole 11 bases, and hopefully we can see more of his running game in 2014. Defensively Puig had 8 outfield assists, and he committed 5 errors while primarily playing in right field.
What was even more delightful than the grand slam itself was the call by Vin Scully. You could feel the excitement with Vinny after the grand slam, and then the Hall of Fame broadcaster turned it to the crowd at Dodger Stadium for a moment which allowed us to enjoy the sounds of the celebration. If you were in attendance of this game, we’d love to know what your experience was like!
After his grand slam, Puig had this to say:
“I’m very happy that the fans are saying my name and the good thing is the team is winning right now,” Puig said through a translator.