Yasiel Puig ready to embrace fresh start with Dodgers, ‘get along with my teammates’

Yasiel Puig is reportedly ready to put a rocky 2015 season — which was full of controversies and injuries — behind him. For the upcoming season, he’s hoping to exceed expectations the Los Angeles Dodgers have for him.

With a newfound focus, and better physique to bring to the playing field for the Dodgers, Puig hopes to play in all 162 games. He missed 83 regular seasons games last year.

"I am working to strengthen the legs and prevent injuries like last year and focused on continuing adjusting to my new life in the majors, to get along with my teammates and try to help the team," Puig told ESPN Deportes.

Much like Puig, the Dodgers will start the 2016 season with a new look and direction. Don Mattingly is gone, and replaced by new manager Dave Roberts, along with other changes on the roster, such as the loss of Zack Greinke in free agency. With a new manager in town, Puig is glad to be getting a fresh start for the Dodgers.

"I talked to him and I am glad that he’s onboard, because I believe that he will help me a lot to relate to everybody on the team," Puig said. "When I was in Cuba [in December], I asked Nelson Cruz and Miguel Cabrera for some advice, because in their beginnings in MLB, they were also criticized. I don’t know how to do it [to relate]. I’m not going locker by locker, shaking hands with everyone. The people like to criticize everything. They even criticized God, whom they didn’t know, so, it doesn’t matter if they criticize Yasiel Puig."

While Puig’s first two seasons with the Dodgers had the Cuban outfielder heading in the direction of stardom, his third in 2015 had him taking a step back. In 79 games, he hit .255 with a .439 slugging percentage, along with a .322 on-base percentage — all career lows. He had only 11 home runs and 38 RBI, which were also lows for his short MLB career.

Along with the lower numbers, Puig reportedly struggled with fitting in the Dodgers’ clubhouse. He was reported late often, and had said to have multiple disagreements with players and coaches. According to Puig’s quotes, it is seeming like he will be turning over a new leaf.

In other words, look to see a new, and improved Puig for 2016.