Again...there was little or no exuberance in anything Puig did. You said it yourself...he made sure the pitcher was watching--WAITED until the pitcher was watching--then took calculated, preplanned action.
I don't get this at all. I've also seen plenty of the "stare down the pitcher" commentary on what Puig did. He did not stare at the pitcher at all - he watched the home run leave, then looked out to see that the pitcher was looking, and then he placed his bat down.
As a pitcher, I was always zeroed in on every hitter individually as an overarching goal of completing the inning, and, further, the game. After that fight with the individual was won or lost, there was a level of exuberance or disappointment. Being able to generate that exuberance into a display at the end of the individual is not "showing up" as much as it could very well be a "tip of the cap" to sort meone just as well.
Puig's background has plenty of people after him, but he's also the guy who was joking with and hugging Javy Baez after the finger wag at second base as well. He's a guy who plays with emotion, but he's learned how to direct that emotion. If a pitcher has previously called out bat flips, he very well may lay down the bat as a point of statement. I have no issue with that whatsoever as he's not starting the fight, he's responding to previous statements.
That's not exuberance. That's being an asshat. I like baseball better without it.