Former Kiwoom Heroes Yasiel Puig is having a tough winter.
The Cuban Baseball Federation announced 50 preliminary entries for the 2023 WBC on the 7th (hereinafter Korean time). It consists of 25 pitchers, 5 catchers, 12 infielders and 8 outfielders.
Among the 50-man reserve entry, two active major leaguers are Yoann Moncada and Louis Robert. Yoan Moncada debuted in the major leagues in 2016 and hit 82 home runs in 643 games with a .253 on-base percentage and .425 slugging percentage. Moncada plays third base and Lewis plays center field.
In addition, Yoenis Cespedes, Roenis Elias, Livan Moneiro, Rydel Martinez, and Yariel Rodriguez are names familiar to us.
However, Puig did not make the list. Puig played in 861 major league games, batting .277 with an on-base percentage of .348 and a slugging percentage of .475. He received attention by finishing second in the 2013 Rookie of the Year voting and being selected as an All-Star in 2014, but his immature behavior and poor workmanship ruined the team atmosphere, and he did not play in the big leagues last time with Cleveland in 2019.
Puig, who was touring the Mexican League, joined Kiwoom Heroes last year. In the beginning of the season, it was difficult to adapt, but in the second half, it exploded with a batting average of .316, on-base percentage, .410, and slugging percentage of .552, leading Kiwoom to advance to the Korean Series 안전놀이터(2nd in the OPS League in the second half). dragged
Kiwoom pushed for a renewal of the contract, but Puig renounced his contract after he was accused of illegal sports betting and perjury in the past. “The news about Puig is completely misleading. Some articles are completely false.” Puig, who left Korea, is looking for a team by participating in winter meetings, but it seems realistically difficult to return to the major leagues.
The Cuban Baseball Federation said in a statement on December 25 that the U.S. government had granted Cuban baseball players who defected to the U.S. to play at the WBC. The WBC could have been the final showcase for Puig’s return to the big leagues, but he was eliminated from the reserve list. The final 30-man entry submission date is February 7, but there is still time left, but Puig’s chances of getting on board seem low.
Cuba is in Group A of the WBC with Chinese Taipei, Netherlands, Italy and Panama. There is a possibility of meeting Korea, which is included in Group B, in the second round of the finals.