Dodgers manager Don Mattingly not worried about Yasiel Puig

first_imgIf the situation has affected Puig, Mattingly said he hasn’t seen it.“He hasn’t changed since he’s been here,” Mattingly said. “He’s been the same type of kid the whole time, and hopefully baseball-wise he’s going to keep getting better.“We’re just going to try to continue to help him try to mature as a player. That’s what we do.”Jackie Robinson DayThe Giants and Dodgers commemorated Jackie Robinson Day with Hall of Fame broadcasters Vin Scully and Jon Miller (who calls Giants games) introducing the lineups emphasizing all players wearing No. 42.“It’s obviously a big day for all of baseball, but I look at it kind of in this organization being extra special because Jackie played in our organization,” Mattingly said.“It’s really a pretty cool thing to have this day tied so closely to your organization.”Kershaw getting close?Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw, who’s been on the disabled list since March 23 with a back strain, expressed confidence after throwing a bullpen session Tuesday.“It feels like we’re getting close, but I don’t know,” Kershaw said.Kershaw threw fastballs exclusively. Mattingly said he topped out at 85 mph, noting that developing his arm strength is the top priority for now.Mattingly confirmed that Kershaw will make a minor league rehab start before returning.Kershaw admitted he’s in the dark about any timetable for his return.“I’m sure they have a tentative in their heads that they don’t want to tell me,” he said.Setback for BillingsleyPitcher Chad Billingsley, who’s recovering from Tommy John surgery, was shut down after throwing eight pitches off a mound on Tuesday.“Not such good news,” Mattingly said.Billingsley will be sent to Los Angeles, where he’ll undergo an MRI, Mattingly said.“I think he felt an uncertainty,” Mattingly said. “He must have felt something in there because he really felt if he let it go, he was going to hurt himself.”AlsoThe Dodgers activated setup man Brian Wilson, who’d been on the disabled list since March 31 with an inflamed nerve on his right (pitching) elbow. To make room for Wilson, the Dodgers optioned left-handed reliever Paco Rodriguez to Triple-A Albuquerque. SAN FRANCISCO >> Whatever happened during Yasiel Puig’s bizarre journey from impoverished Cuba to big league stardom and the bright lights of Los Angeles will apparently stay South of the Border.At least that’s how Dodgers manager Don Mattingly is viewing revelations in a Los Angeles Magazine article alleging direct involvement of the Mexican drug cartel in bringing one of baseball’s most exciting and controversial players to the United States.The article, which has garnered national media attention, suggests the unsavory figures who figured prominently in helping Puig land a $42 million contract could pose a threat to his safety, as well as any fans or teammates at Dodger Stadium or elsewhere that might be in their way. One of Puig’s smugglers, who Puig alleged had harassed him, was killed execution-style, according to the report. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Mattingly said he has not read the article but acknowledged hearing “tidbits” about it. He said he was not concerned about his own personal safety.“We’re on the baseball side of it,” Mattingly said.“I don’t know what went on and how it happened and I don’t know if the guy who wrote the article (Jesse Katz) knows what happened or what went on, because I haven’t heard Yasiel say anything about it.”Puig, however, did offer a cryptic comment to the publication regarding his situation, saying in Spanish “Sleep is when it’s your turn to die.“For that reason, I sleep with one eye open.”last_img

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