Originally written on Baseball News Source  |  Last updated 7/1/13
Los Angeles Dodgers rookie sensation Yasiel Puig finished off a phenomenal month of June (his first month in the big leagues) in grand fashion on Sunday, going 4-for-5 with a double and triple, while scoring two runs in the Dodgers’ 6-1 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies.Since his big league call-up on June 3, Puig has logged 44 hits, breaking the Dodgers franchise record for hits in a single calendar month by a rookie, which was previously 43, set by Steve Sax in August 1982.By collecting four hits on Sunday, Puig moved past former-Pittsburgh Pirate Bob Elliott, who previously held onto the second-most number of hits for a rookie in his first full calendar month with 42, set in September 1939.New York Yankees Hall of Famer Joe DiMaggio holds that particular record, collecting 48 hits in May 1936.While Puig has certainly amazed most in the baseball community with his impressive statistics (Puig batted .436 with seven home runs and 16 RBI in June), it’s his fellow Los Angeles teammates that have been amazed most by the talents he has displayed in less than a month with the club.Los Angeles starting pitcher Stephen Fife asserts that Puig has been the burst of energy that a stagnant Dodgers club needed heading into the summer stretch.“Puig’s definitely brought an energy and a spark to us, and his skill level, I think, is a little more than anybody anticipated it would be,” Fife said. “Ever since he first got here, I’ve had a lot of friends and family ask me: ‘Hey, what’s it like?’ And I just say: ‘Keep watching, because it’s going to be historic.’ And as it’s turned out, it’s been a pretty historic start.”Since Puig’s promotion, the Dodgers have gone 15-11 and scored an average of 4.33 runs per game in that 26 game span. Prior to the arrival of Puig, the Dodgers had boasted a paltry 23-32 record and had been scoring an average of 3.45 runs per game.“It doesn’t seem like he’s slowing down,” Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis said. “He’s definitely changed the culture in the clubhouse.”He certainly appears to have changed the culture in Los Angeles or at least has helped add a much needed spark to a Dodgers lineup that was sitting last in the NL West standings, mired 8 1/2 games back of the division leading Arizona Diamondbacks.Although the Dodgers still remain fifth in the standings, they are only four games back of the Diamondbacks and are in prime position to make a potential, yet viable postseason run behind the leadership of players like Yasiel Puig, who has rejuvenated not only a stagnant Los Angeles lineup, but also a baseball community that both admired and embraced the talents of this young star.
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