Matt LaPorta is doing his best to remove the “bust” label.
Since coming back from Triple-A Columbus, he’s now hit home runs in three consecutive games, including the three-run bomb he hit today. Including his stint in Columbus, LaPorta has hit 8 home runs in the past 23 games. Not too shabby.
This is a terrific sign for the Indians. After two months of this season, LaPorta looked like as big of a bust as anyone in recent memory. And given that the Indians had traded CC Sabathia and LaPorta was the centerpiece of that deal, well, you can kind of see why the Tribe was getting antsy. I wrote in my post about the Russell Branyan trade that the reason the Indians made the Branyan deal was to get LaPorta back up to the big leagues. It’s amazing what a stable position and a little confidence in a guy can do. I made the comment to someone that the Branyan trade wouldn’t have happened until July or August if former manager Eric Wedge was still around, and I give credit to GM Mark Shapiro and current manager Manny Acta for showing some faith in LaPorta. I don’t agree with everything Acta has done (his use of the bullpen is downright curious sometimes) but I definitely applaud this move. If you’re going to rebuild, go all out, balls to the wall, and give the guy who was the top prospect in your system last year a legit chance. I doubt LaPorta continues this tear, but if he can establish himself as a legit power threat in the Indians’ lineup, then this will go a long way towards helping the rebuilding project. The Tribe put a lot of eggs in the Matt LaPorta basket. They really need for those eggs to hatch.