Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said he is putting the team on the field that gives the Dodgers the best chance to win Tuesday's elimination game. That lineup does not include Yasiel Puig.
The superstar outfielder is benched for Game 4 of the National League Division Series against the St. Louis Cardinals after going 3 for 12 in the series. Andre Ethier will take his place in center, accompanied by Carl Crawford in left and Matt Kemp in right. Puig is 3 for 12 in the NLDS, but he's struck out 8 times, all on outside pitches.
Mattingly told reporters before the game his decision had nothing to do with any physical ailment that might be contributing to Puig's slump.
"He's healthy," Mattingly said. "It's pretty simple. I just feel like this gives us the best chance to win today. ... It's not about anything bad with Yasiel."
Yasiel Puig.296/.382/.480 16 HR's
Andre Ethier.249/.322/.370 4 HR's
Puig vs. RHP.307/.384/.516 14 HR's
Ethier vs. RHP.253/.325/.385 4 HR's
The Dodgers are down 2-1 in the best-of-five series against the Cardinals. The Dodgers are stacked with lefties who will hit against the right-hander Shelby Miller. Puig is 1-for-2 with a double and walk against Miller, while Ethier has a pair of hits, including a homer, against the Cardinals right-hander.