"At this point, I'm going to match up as best I can," Mattingly said. "You think about it a lot. With all our guys, I worry about them emotionally and what it does to them."
Neither Kemp nor Mattingly spoke with reporters after the lineup change. Asked to elaborate on Kemp's mood after being told he wasn't starting, Mattingly said, "I think he was just upset."
Said Johnson: "I'm happy that he's upset. Now, when you get the opportunity, let's go out there and play. We want guys, when they're sitting on the bench, to be upset. We want guys who want to play. We want competitors. There's nothing wrong with that. Don knows that. If this is all we've got to go through, we're OK."
Puig was benched for an August game in Miami last season for violating a team rule and showing up late to the clubhouse. He later hit the decisive home run as a pinch hitter.
Kemp had left ankle surgery and left shoulder surgery in October, and missed the team's first five games this year. He batted .113 in 53 at-bats in minor league spring training games.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.