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San Francisco Giants Offensive Struggles and Launch Angles

Jake Mastroianni
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - AUGUST 21: Brandon Crawford #35 of the San Francisco Giants hits a double that scored a run in the fourth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at AT&T Park on August 21, 2017 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - AUGUST 21: Brandon Crawford #35 of the San Francisco Giants hits a double that scored a run in the fourth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at AT&T Park on August 21, 2017 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Here we take a deeper look at just how bad the San Francisco Giants were on offense during the 2017 season, and where they can improve.

I know most of you don’t want to relive the 2017 season, but learning from our past will hopefully make us better in the future.

Let’s get the really ugly stats out of the way first, and then we’ll look at where I think the Giants need to focus.

The Giants were 29th in runs scored, 23rd in batting average, 29th in on-base-percentage, and last in home runs. They were also last in slugging percentage and OPS (on-base-percentage + slugging percentage).

It doesn’t get much worse than that folks.

About the only thing the Giants did well on offense is not strikeout. They had the sixth fewest strikeouts in all of baseball, but I’m guessing most fans would take a few more strikeouts for a few more home runs.

Before the start of the 2017 season there was a lot of talk about launch angles. Players trying to hit the ball at a certain angle to get a launch … makes sense.

Now I don’t know if I buy into all that hooplah, but the Giants certainly didn’t. They had the third most groundball outs in all of baseball.

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You can look at this one of two ways — either they aren’t generating enough launch for extra base hits, or they were very unlucky at finding holes.

Since the Giants were 29th in the league in extra base hits, I tend to think they aren’t generating enough of a launch angle … whatever that angle is.

I’ve always been a huge believer that if you hit the ball hard on the ground, good things will happen. But I never played above the high school level.

The infielders in Major League Baseball seem to be playing defensive at a level I’ve never seen. When you combine that with all the shifts employed on hitters today to take away groundballs, and it’s time to look into this launch angle theory.

Next: Should the San Francisco Giants Pursue Another Starting Pitcher?

San Francisco Giants hitters need to take a look at their peers this offseason and see the trend in baseball. Groundballs are outs now, so let’s start looking to drive the baseball.

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