By Mark Saxon
The Los Angeles Dodgers promoted their top prospect, Yasiel Puig, following Sunday's 7-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies.
Puig is expected to be in Los Angeles on Monday and likely will be the everyday center fielder while Matt Kemp is on the disabled list with a mildly strained right hamstring. Puig, 22, was batting .313 with eight home runs and 37 RBIs at Double-A Chattanooga. The Cuban defector, who signed a $42 million contract a year ago, was a sensation in spring training, batting .517 and prompting comparisons to Bo Jackson because of his size and speed.
The Dodgers optioned pitcher Matt Magill, who allowed nine walks and four home runs Sunday, to Triple-A Albuquerque.
In addition to the Kemp injury, the Dodgers also are without left fielder Carl Crawford, who has missed the past two games with a sore hamstring.
The Dodgers had hoped Puig could spend more time in the minor leagues refining his game and maturing. In spring training, manager Don Mattingly compared him to a "wild horse," and said he needed more time to polish his overall game. Puig was arrested in Chattanooga in late April on reckless driving charges for allegedly driving 97 mph in a 50-mph zone.
Puig is 6-foot-3 and 245 pounds with good speed and a strong right arm.
The Dodgers, who entered the season with a National League-record $217 million payroll, are in last place with a 23-32 record, 8 games behind the first-place Arizona Diamondbacks.
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