The wait is over. Ramon Laureano’s PED suspension has finally come to an end, those 80 games having been served. He is set to take his place in the Oakland A’s outfield once again, providing Gold Glove caliber defense and a solid all around presence in the lineup.
His return is something that the A’s desperately need. While the pitching has generally been solid, their offense has sputtered recently. The A’s rank dead last in the American League in batting average, on base percentage, and OPS. They need someone that can hit, get on base, and provide some semblence of power.
Ramon Laureano desperately needed by Oakland A’s
Laureano can do that. Prior to his suspension last season, he had produced a .246/.317/.443 batting line in his 378 plate appearances, hitting 14 homers and 21 doubles while stealing 12 bases. His .760 OPS from last season would only trail Sheldon Neuse out of anyone who has had a plate appearance for the A’s this season.
It may take some time for Laureano to reach that level of production at the major league level. He had struggled during his time in Triple-A, producing a meager .135/.273/.189 batting line in his 44 plate appearances entering Saturday. While he is getting on base, he has not displayed the pop nor the ability to make consistent contact that the A’s have come to expect.
It is also fair to wonder how long he will be in Oakland. The A’s made a flurry of moves before the start of the season to slash salary. With plenty of teams looking for help in the outfield, and particularly in center, Laureano could be an intriguing trade option, especially if he shows that he can return to form in the next few weeks.
Ramon Laureano is finally back with the Oakland A’s. His return to the lineup could not come soon enough considering their struggles.