On Friday, the MLB announced that A’s center fielder Ramon Laureano’s suspension is being reduced from six to four games. This is huge for the swinging A’s since, as reported by Jeff Passan, Laureano now will miss no division games. Laureano’s suspension starts tonight and runs through the weekend series against the San Francisco Giants. It will then, carry into the first game against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday.
First, let’s get into how this now affects the A’s. Sometimes it’s just about luck of the draw. As I mentioned in my previous article on Laureano’s suspension, in addition to solid defense, he’s also solid at the plate. Laureano just seems to know how to keep it simple and hit the ball. So why then isn’t this a big loss in four games now instead of six?
They are playing the pesky battling Giants but they are still the Giants. Manager Gabe Kapler, has looked better at the helm this season and that’s good for them, but their roster is still not plentiful with MLB talent, whereas, we know the Athletics roster is. Then of course the last game Laureano will miss, is against the Diamondbacks. So far, they have been about even with the Giants in play. The Diamondbacks, of course, field a better roster than the Giants, but they are still struggling early on. Laureano’s absence should not be felt as much as I once thought.
This should benefit the A’s as they put in a struggling Davis more this weekend, who is likely to replace the bat of Laureano. Maybe for the A’s sake, Laureano’s suspension just so happened to fall at the best time it possibly could. You never want to be missing a player for a handful of games, but luckily for the A’s, it’s a rather easy handful. This too could be a blessing in disguise for the A’s to get some of their struggling players going this weekend, due to more at-bats.
Either way, it worked out for the Swinging A’s, as they lose Laureano for two fewer games and lose him against inferior, out-of-division opponents. Without Laureano in the lineup. this is also a weekend I really look to see California native Stephen Piscotty get fully going.
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