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2014 Dodgers review: Yasiel Puig

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Yasiel Puig provided the Dodgers most of the same electric results he showed in his debut in 2013 again in 2014, his first full season in the majors. Here is a review of his fantastic sophomore season.

What went right

Yasiel Puig was the Dodgers' most dynamic position player for a second straight year, and also its most polarizing figure. He hit .296/.382/.480 with a .379 wOBA, a 145 OPS+ and 147 wRC+ with 62 extra-base hits in 148 games, including 37 doubles.

Puig led Dodgers position players in Wins Above Replacement by well over a win, in both versions, putting up 5.4 WAR using the Baseball-Reference version, and 5.1 WAR using FanGraphs.

He led the Dodgers with 67 walks and tied for the team lead with 92 runs scored. On the painful side, Puig also led the team with 12 hit-by-pitches, the first Dodger with double-digit HBPs in consecutive years since Alex Cora in 2003-2004.

He hit .398/.492/.731 with eight home runs and 25 RBI in 28 games in May, earning his second career National League Player of the Month honors.

Puig was one of three NL outfielders elected to start in the All-Star Game, his first appearance in the midsummer classic.

He led all National League outfielders with 15 assists, one shy of the major league lead (Yoenis Cespedes), and he moved to center field in late July and didn't kill the team. To the contrary, Puig shifting to center field helped stabilize the Dodgers outfield, and primed a stretch run that resulted in a second straight division title.

Puig's current career batting average of .305 is the lowest it has ever been.

What went wrong

After hitting 19 home runs in just 104 games in his rookie season, Puig took a step back in 2014 with 16 home runs in 148 games. Half of those dingers came in May, and after eight home runs and 25 RBI during his best month, Puig had five home runs and 29 RBI over his final 97 games, hitting .270/.353/.420 over the final four months.

Puig was held homerless in two different months — June and August.

He was overwhelmed by emotion in the NLDS, had seven consecutive strikeouts at one point (and a triple, it should be noted), and was benched in Game 4 in favor of Andre Ethier.

Puig also continued the Dodgers' sad tradition in the Home Run Derby with zero home runs.

2014 particulars

Age: 23

Salary: $2 million

Game of the year

Puig had three different four-hit games on the season, but the most fun to watch came on July 25 in San Francisco. Puig was 4-for-5 with a double, two runs scored and two RBI in an 8-1 rout of the Giants, but the highlight was his three triples, tying the Dodgers franchise record, last reached in 1901.

Roster status

Puig will earn $4.5 million in 2015, the fourth season of his seven-year deal. With one year, 119 days of service time, Puig will likely fall short of Super Two status after next season, but it could be close. The cutoff this offseason was two years, 133 days, and last year was two years, 122 days.

Puig's contract stipulates that he can opt out and into salary arbitration when he is eligible. As it stands, Puig is scheduled to earn $5.5 million in 2016, $6.5 million in 2017 and $7.5 million in 2018. He won't be a free agent until after 2019.