Posted July 11, 2013

Miguel Montero says Yasiel Puig is ‘doing stupid things’

Miguel Montero, Yasiel Puig
Miguel Montero tagged out Yasiel Puig on Tuesday night and later had some words for L.A.'s rookie star. (Christian petersen/Getty Images)

Miguel Montero tagged out Yasiel Puig on Tuesday night and later had some words for L.A.’s rookie star. (Christian petersen/Getty Images)

On Tuesday night, Yasiel Puig made an ill-advised attempt to score from third base when Diamondbacks shorstop Didi Gregarius appeared to pocket a cutoff throw from centerfield. Puig was out by 10 feet, but dropped his shoulder on Arizona catcher Miguel Montero anyway. Montero held onto the ball for the out, but the two players exchanged glares after the play, with Montero wagging his finger at Puig. Before Wednesday night’s game, Montero had some advice for the Dodgers rookie.

“If he’s my teammate, I probably try to teach him how to behave in the big leagues,” Montero told MLB.com’s Tyler Emerick. “He’s creating a bad reputation around the league, and it’s unfortunate because the talent that he has is to be one of the greatest players in the big leagues. Right now, I’m not going to say he’s the best because he hasn’t proved anything yet. Does he have talent? Of course. Does he have the tools? Of course. He’s got so much talent, it’d be really bad if he wasted it doing the stupid things that he’s doing. You have to respect to earn respect. If you don’t respect anybody, you aren’t going to earn respect.

“I don’t blame him running me over, it’s part of the game,” Montero added. “The only thing I really don’t appreciate is why you have to look back at me. I really don’t appreciate that. It’s immaturity. It’s part of his confidence right now that everything is going his way. Everything is right for him, he feels pretty good about himself. This game pays back though, he’s going to have his bad moments out there and then he’s going to realize he needs to change. When you go 0-for-20 or 1-for-50, then you realize it. . . . He’ll learn, he’s just got four weeks in the big leagues and is having a great time now. The game will humble you for sure. The game doesn’t need you, we need the game.”

Montero is developing a bit of a reputation himself as talker, having previously voiced complaints about pitching prospect Trevor Bauer both during and after Bauer’s time with the Diamondbacks. Montero and Puig were also both in the middle of the action in the bean-brawl between the Dodgers and Diamondbacks last month, both being hit by pitches and incurring fines.

Both Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson and Dodgers skipper Don Mattingly brushed off Montero’s criticisms.

Puig probably does need to tone it down a little. It was exciting when he scored from second on a groundout last week, but he probably should have been out on that play as well, and his decision to go home on Tuesday night was just foolish. There are also the usual concerns about his aggressive play leading to injury as he has had his share of scary slides, dives and collisions with the outfield wall already. As is the case for many players (Bryce Harper, another preternatural talent who probably believes he is capable of anything on a baseball field and isn’t far from wrong, leaps to mind here), Puig needs to figure out how to be both aggressive and smart. That said, if this is the only version of Yasiel Puig we ever get, most people around baseball will probably take it.

75 comments
Tell The Truth
Tell The Truth

Puig should also tone down the amount of HGH and Testosterone he is taking....but lets all pretend AGAIN that that is not the case....and just feel good about him

WarEagle2013
WarEagle2013

Let's be honest.  The guy, rather by his own volition or from his agent/teammates, is openly relishing the villain role.  He's putting up the numbers now (although he's regressed to .250 over his last 10 games), but his plate discipline will determine whether he is a Miguel Cabrera or poor man's Adam Dunn within the next few years

Jim30
Jim30

Puig is a hot dog, Play a full season, then lets talk smack.

brighat
brighat

People like Yasiel Puig and Bryce Harper make me appreciate the talents of Mike Trout more. At least I don't read endless stories about him on these websites. 

Metlib
Metlib

Yes, Miguel, the finger wave was very mature. Don't be f---ing hypocrite! You just can't handle hitting .200 while Puig's pushing .400!


sterculius65
sterculius65

Couldn't be that Motero is having a hissy fit because they just got swept at home? Regardless the finger wagger should not be calling other players "arrogant".

The_Sports_Dude
The_Sports_Dude

Miguel Montero should really be more concerned with his .219/.306/.318 slash line instead of how opposing players are carrying themselves. 

Alvin1
Alvin1

The kid has had an amazing month.  He may become a superstar.  He's a kid.  He's gonna do stupid things.  The media has tried to make him out to be the next Ted Williams and anybody is gonna get an ego boost out of that.  Let's not condemn him for mistakes or make him out to be the next Hank Aaron after 35 games.  I remember a kid we had in Atlanta.  He was called up and was amazing the second half of the season.  Made the cover of Sports Illustrated. He had 2 years of success after that.  Now he's back in the minor leagues in the Giants farm system.  Remember Jeff Francoeur?

LucianGozzi
LucianGozzi

Montero is absolutely right. It isnt just this instance. He popped off at the mouth to Sergio Romo, acted like a fool to Luis Gonzalez for no reason, stares people down. Then he will be surprised when someone puts a fastball in his ribs. He is a punk, and I for one cant wait to see someone knock his ego back down to earth.

Cool
Cool

What has Miguel Montero done to earn the "respect" to say the things he did about another player?  Is he like the team captain or the one anointed as the mouth piece for the team?  From the last part of this article I am thinking perhaps coaching staff really could have done without the comments.

Jdshewman
Jdshewman

So I have seen hard collisions at home. What was Puig suppose to do, stop and allow him to tag him softly. These teams have history and Montero is just dragging current hatred towards the Dodgers against Puig. Get over it you wuss. 

RobertK.Fleck
RobertK.Fleck

Love watching him play....he goes full speed on everything! What I did notice was him flipping his bat and admiring a single!! WTF, a single!!!

korda.aaron
korda.aaron

Stfu montero he plays with his heart. Maybe you should learn from him. Oh ya and didn't your own pitcher throw at his head!!! That's way more immature than a glare. Talking out against puig is the only way you could get in the news because your play is not making any headlines!

canadianox
canadianox

He will learn, they all do. Montero pretty much summed it up. Gary Sheffield learned, they all learn. Love the talent!! 

tfaw
tfaw

dude is a player.  get over it.  

slothostpaul
slothostpaul

I've read about him, but don't know much about him. About his name: is it pronounced "puke-ey, " "piggy" or what? Whatever, he hasn't been around long enough for his attitude.

chuckswole
chuckswole

He makes them full speed; he's learning. Give the kid a break.

sbhall52
sbhall52

If Puig was out by 10 feet, then Montero was the stupid one for blocking, instead of swipe tag. Sooner or later, MLB will figure out that blocking *any* base is dumb.

The_Sports_Dude
The_Sports_Dude

If Puig wanted to take Montero out, he would've knocked him into the backstop.  Montero is built like a DB while Puig's built like a middle linebacker.  Puig will learn eventually.  It's his misfortune he wasn't blessed like an internet commenter who had the whole world figured out at the tender age of 22.

blunot78
blunot78

He's got a lot of 'tude to go with the talent, no doubt. Twice already I've seen him get tossed out at second trying to stretch a routine single to left into a double. The throw in both cases was one MLB outfielders make 19 times out of 20. You can be a great player without being an arrogant schmuck (see Buster Posey). But Montero is right; no one owns this game for very long, and Puig will figure that out.

xxman
xxman

Besides - had Puig made a head-first slide towards the first base side of the plate, he might have been safe.

xxman
xxman

Montero's finger wave was nothing more than a "nope, it didn't work this time."  As for Puig's look-back, he perhaps didn't understand (like a lot of you guys) the meaning of the gesture.

 Nothing more than a little gamesmanship going on - it comes with the territory.

G1/2Full7
G1/2Full7

is it mature to wag your finger at him after he doesn't score? Wag your finger at me and I'm going to stare you down too

kdbarbershop
kdbarbershop

Puig shouldn't have stared back at the guy, unless he was doing it to send a message. But even then, when you try to run over someone, haven't you just sent your message? Montero says he wasn't angry about that. Good for him. If you're standing in the baseline with the ball, be prepared to get hit. That's part of the game. Like Harper, Puig should take the baseball life a little slower. I like his hustle but he's not going to last playing like that everyday. Too bad it took Puig's reckless hustle in the outfield for someone recognize that Harper is doing the same thing. Harper is just a horrible outfielder, but I guess that will fly under the radar until Puig also shows weakness out there.

MichaelDean
MichaelDean

He's 22 years old. Of course he's immature. he also plays hard and he's fun to watch and he's brought life to a team that was on life support. Give the kid a break.

Joe R2
Joe R2

I can't wait for the next brawl between these 2 teams.  That'll be the next time I pay attention to this boring sport.

6marK6
6marK6

And if Pete Rose had done the same thing, people would be saying how much spirit he has and what a competitor he is. I think people are a little jealous of Puig's heat right now.

Wisconsin Death Trip
Wisconsin Death Trip

A clear sign of prior Cuban/Castro indoctrination if I ever saw one......or it......whatever. Brain damaged goods?! Then again, all anyone cares about around here is whether he can play baseball....right?

MARK7
MARK7

Just think how much fun baseball would be if everybody played that way all the time.  Oh, and lets not forget that the Diamondbacks threw at his HEAD almost ending his career in only his 8th game in the big leagues... And who is immature?Then you have guys like Montero, who has a 3rd grade education, is marginal at best,

Michael10
Michael10

@brighat You must not have been around here last season when every other article on the site was just as sticky with Trout-love...

DodgersForever
DodgersForever

@LucianGozzi, you sound like just like the other dbags on your team: montero, parra, kennedy, gibson.. all dbags

The_Sports_Dude
The_Sports_Dude

@LucianGozzi That account is being overblown and has been disputed by eyewitnesses.  It wouldn't be the first time Luis Gonzalez exaggerated or lied (see Steroid Era).

Cool
Cool

@LucianGozzi I know, you would probably prefer that he just do a Tebow every time he does something good.. it draws far less attention to himself... right?

PAZSKY
PAZSKY

@xxman Puig stared at Montero, THEN Montero wagged his finger....

PAZSKY
PAZSKY

@Joe R2 Hopefully it will never happen so can bid you good riddance...

jdane
jdane

@6marK6 No.  If Pete Rose had done it, he would be called a cheap-shot artist, just as he was when he ruined R. Fosse's career in a meaningless game.

kdbarbershop
kdbarbershop

@6marK6 Good point, not sure if I agree though. Today's game is a little different. Mike Matheny's career was shortened by a home plate collission. And Coincidently enough, another Giant cather, Buster Posey, missed most of the 2011 season because a home plate collision, which, like Puig and Montero's, could have been avoided.

westcoasttiger
westcoasttiger

@6marK6 Good comparison. I hated Rose but Puig runs out everything... just like Pete.

6marK6
6marK6

@Wisconsin Death Trip Uhh, he is not Aaron Hernandez. So he shows some signs of immaturity, who cares, Sounds more like bitterness to me.

LucianGozzi
LucianGozzi

@DodgersForever and you sound like a typical dipshit dodgers fan. Congrats on being relevant for the first time in 30 years. Very well run franchise. hahaha

brighat
brighat

@Michael10 I would just use a joke Facebook account for everything. I don't have a real one anyway.

Michael10
Michael10

@brighat @Michael10 I check in there for the sortable standings, run differentials and expanded leaderboards, but don't comment because of the facebook requirement...