When it comes to making an impact on a Major League Baseball game, very few can match Oakland Athletics outfielder Ramón Laureano. And on the day he returned to the A’s after a 17-game absence, Laureano made sure everyone remembered that fact in due haste.
Laureano returned from a stint on the injured list on Wednesday against the Angels, and with the Athletics already down 4-0 in the fourth inning, he went to work. Laureano first robbed a Los Angeles home run and then hit a dinger of his own in the bottom of the fourth.
Here’s Laureano’s robbery, saving the bacon of A’s starting pitcher Cole Irvin.
The A’s have done alright without Laureano, but his prowess in the outfield provides a unique jolt of energy to the Athletics. His arm strength is always a factor for base runners to consider, too.
And here’s Laureano’s home run, off Angels starting pitcher Griffin Canning, ruining what was fine outing from LA’s pitcher at the time.
The A’s held on to first place in the AL West while Laureano was gone, but if Oakland is to make noise in the postseason, it must have Laureano on board. He helps his team win more than any other hitter in the majors, and it’s easy to see his impact — especially when he does so much after being out of sight for so long.
Update: The Athletics used Laureano’s boost to complete the win against the Angels on Wednesday, 8-4, giving Oakland a series sweep. Here’s more info on the the blistering pace the A’s have set in 2021, especially after losing their first six games of the season.
Bonus info: this is the second time this season Laureano has robbed a home run and hit one of his own in the same game.