Adam LaRoche's four-hit day on Wednesday gave the National League's most notorious slow starter a career-high 17 hits in April. He entered the season as a lifetime .179 hitter during the first month of the season.
2004 - .214/.254/.339, 1 HR in 56 AB
2005 - .206/.324/.365, 2 HR in 63 AB
2006 - .200/.294/.453, 4 HR in 75 AB
2007 - .133/.255/.265, 3 HR in 83 AB
2008 - .163/.247/.225, 1 HR in 80 AB
2009 - .304/.350/.589, 3 HR in 56 AB
It couldn't possible be a case of better timing for LaRoche. He's making $7.05 million in his final year of arbitration after failing to work out a long-term deal with the Pirates in the offseason. Younger and more durable than most of the competition, he could be viewed as the top first baseman available in free agency this winter. The career .272/.339/.493 hitter will play next season at age 30, and he should be in line a rather significant three-year deal.