The much anticipated Arizona Fall League debut of Yasiel Puig on Tuesday didn't happen, nor will his participation in the six-week league. The 21-year old Cuban outfielder has been sidelined with a staph infection in his right elbow that required a surgical procedure. Ken Gurnick at MLB.com has more details.
Puig was signed to a seven-year, $42 million major league contract on June 29, two days before new restrictions on international signings went into effect. After nearly a year and a half without playing organized baseball, Puig hit .354/.442/.634 in 23 professional games, including .327/.407/.423 in 14 games with Class A Rancho Cucamonga.
Just last week general manager Ned Colletti spoke highly of Puig's tools, while admitting it was too early to tell whether or not Puig would play in the majors in 2013.
"Great, plus-plus tools. Power, speed, arm. He still needs some work around the game, inside the game," Colletti said. "He's going to play in the (Arizona) Fall League; that will be another indicator for us. You could be standing with your back to the cage, and when he hits you'll know he's hitting."
Casey Blake suffered a staph infection in his left elbow in 2011 and was sidelined for a month.