Aug. 7, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA: Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Wil Myers hits a single in the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Comparing Wil Myers and Yasiel Puig


Aug 9, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers center fielder Yasiel Puig (66) doubles in a run in the eighth inning of the game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Throughout baseball history, there have been great debates as to the best player at their position during any given era. In the 1950′s, the debate was between Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays and the criminally underrated Duke Snider. There was the debate of which pitcher was better – Greg Maddux or Roger Clemens (before the PED allegations). At the same time, there was the shortstop debate between Derek Jeter, Nomar Garciaparra and Alex Rodriguez.

Now, another possible point of debate appears to be on the verge of occurring, and was highlighted in the Rays weekend series with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The debate – which prospect would you rather have, Wil Myers or Yasiel Puig? David Schoenfield of ESPN recently looked into that very topic, comparing both players performances thus far.

Both players have their similarities, yet are vastly different at the same time. Both have burst onto the scene at age 22, both are the same height (6’3) with excellent power potential, deceptive speed and are solid defensively. However, that is where the similarities end. Myers is much quieter, going about his way on the baseball field in a very business like manner. Meanwhile, Puig plays with an enthusiasm and borderline arrogance that can wear the opposition the wrong way, having already incurred the wrath of Dusty Baker and being in the midst of a brawl. He also plays with a careless abandon that could potentially lead to injury down the line, and has already missed some time with injuries this year.

Both players may also end up with different career arcs. While Myers may not have the same ceiling that Puig does, he not likely to have the same basement. After all, for how well Puig started, it was the best start to a career since Jeff Francouer, who is best known for being the worst player in baseball in 2012 and for potentially not even existing. Myers, meanwhile, is highly unlikely to reach the nadir that is Francouer without severe injury.

As it appears presently, Myers may be the safer of the two options, more likely to settle in as a power hitting, middle of the order type of bat. Joe Maddon has been having Myers hit cleanup as of late, and he has responded by producing a .385/.468/.564 batting line with two home runs and nine RBIs in that spot heading into last night’s action. Puig certainly has his merits, and has been compared to a young Vladimir Guerrero.

While it is fun to debate Puig and Myers right now, this may be a debate that stretches on for the next decade. Both players, who happen to both play at the same position, are phenoms that major league teams dream about. While it may be fun to debate which player one would rather have presently, it is going to be even better to watch both players progress over the next few years.

Tags: Los Angeles Dodgers Tampa Bay Rays Wil Myers Yasiel Puig

  • Rhonda Wood

    Which player has lead a 27 game turnaround, by his team, since June 22, enough said! Both are good players, but only Puig of the two, has the tools, to be a superstar!

    • Victor Ochoa

      I definitely agree with Rhonda…Yasiel is the man!!!

    • Joey

      There’s no debate the Myers is more polished and is having a better year. But over the long haul Puig should be better as he learns the game. Friday nights game against the Rays shows you how raw he is. Three runs scored because of his decision making. If Puig doesn’t learn to hit a cutoff man or listen to the third base coach he’ll end up costing his team. He has an absolute canon for an arm. He throws lasers as he’s falling backwards. You can’t deny his ridiculous skills. However, this year, I go with Myers. Especially if my team is playoff bound. Don’t forget Wil hit 14 bombs before he was called up.

      • Rhonda Wood

        Joey, they were giving Andre a rest that night, Puig has played like 3 games in CF. From RF he can throw to the infield, from the warning track, he did it against St Louis last week, CF is a completely, different animal ! Matt Kemp will be coming back soon, Puig will not need to play CF then! Myers, I have seen play only 3 games this weekend, looks like a keeper, but is he the 5 tool player Puig is? I don’t think so!!!!!

        • Joey

          Rhonda can you even name the five tools without looking them up?

          • Rhonda Wood

            Joey, this is Tim Wood, I have been a Dodger fan, since the Ravine was built, I have seen some great players in my life. Hit for avg., hit with power, Steal bases, ( speed,run the bases), Great defense, Great throwing arm, Puig really has 6 tools, he plays 100 percent all the time! By the way he made the game saving catch tonight, and drove in the winning run again, HE IS THE REAL DEAL.

          • Joey

            Very proud of you! If you’re such a big dodger fan why are you on a Rays site?

          • Rhonda Wood

            Joey, they had the comparison, of Myers and Puig on the Dodger Website also, good work, by David Hill, a very interesting read! Both players, I think both will have great careers. By the way the hidden ball trick, has lead to Uribe being awarded a base with a shoe taped to it, by Adrian and Puig, The Rays have helped bring our clubhouse even closer together, and looser! Thanks Tampa, hope to see ya in Oct..

          • Dave Hill

            Thanks Rhonda. Glad you liked it.

          • Dave Hill

            The Dodgers were tagged on the post also, since it did involve both teams.

  • Jason Klenetsky

    Puig plays with wreckless abandon, he will never play a full season. His energy is great but for the long haul ill take Wil Myers. He’s consistent, a team player, and just all around likable guy. Remminence of Dale Murphy.

    • Rhonda Wood

      Jason, didn’t Pete Rose play all out every game? Puig is like a breath of fresh air, he plays the game the way it is supposed to be played! You don’t think Puig is a team player, he won’t even talk about himself to the media, after games! He is just learning the game, he gets carried away at times, but he has, Hanley, Uribe, A-Gon, Big Mac, Davy Lopes, and Donnie Baseball, to correct him, when he does something wrong! This guy reminds me of Roberto Clemente, big time, he has all the tools, what a find for the Dodgers!

      • Jason Klenetsky

        Agree to disagree

      • Orestes Ortega

        Exactly you get paid millions, play like a hero

    • Orestes Ortega

      That reckless abandon it’s what the rays just need..cus the way they been Playing its like they went to a trip to the beach

  • Double_Up

    Why do people say “a young Vladimir Guerrero”? A young Vlad was five tool and stole a lot of bases. An older Vlad was five tool and didn’t steal a lot of bases. The only difference was Vlad had bad knees from the concrete in Montreal and stole a lot less, but still gave 110% effort. It wasn’t until he got that muscle tear in 2008 and the surgery in 2009 that he was forced to play DH so much.

    • Dave Hill

      My thought why people say ‘young Vlad Guerrero’ is because both seem to be bad ball hitters. I remember seeing Guerrero when he first came up and, while there are similarities, I don’t think they are as close as a lot of people seem to believe either.

  • Orestes Ortega

    Im a rays fan, im also cuban..i don’t want to brag about our baseball but cubans play more for the love of baseball than the love of money. Cus want you get paid millions today in this baseball era all this guys do it’s sit their asses down