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SF Giants: 3 big numbers from the first series of the season

Johnny Cueto #47 of the SF Giants pitches against the San Diego Padres at Oracle Park on September 26, 2020. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Johnny Cueto #47 of the SF Giants pitches against the San Diego Padres at Oracle Park on September 26, 2020. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
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SF Giants, Donovan Solano
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON – APRIL 01: Donovan Solano #7 of the SF Giants at-bat against the Seattle Mariners in the fourth inning on Opening Day at T-Mobile Park on April 01, 2021, in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

SF Giants: 3 big numbers from the first series of the season
2. 40.0% hard-hit rate

Even though the Giants were shut out in the third game of the series, the offense still generated hard-hit contact at an above-average rate over their first three games (37.6% was league-average in 2020). A 40% rate is far from exceptional, but it would have been the seventh-highest rate in MLB last season (the Giants ranked eighth with a 39.4% hard-hit rate).

Many have questioned San Francisco’s offensive success last season. Without any premium stars, it’s easy to be skeptical of the lineup. Unlike their rival Dodgers or Padres, the Giants probably won’t have a player to count on for 35-40 home runs. Instead, they will need to have one of the deepest offenses in baseball to generate above-average play. The first series of the season suggested that’s possible once again.

Mike Yastrzemski performed like a star last season, and many fans believe he could be a middle-of-the-lineup staple for years to come. Aside from him though, the organization will probably have to wait until next offseason to add a truly elite hitter to the roster. In due time, assuming the Giants make the right moves in free agency while continuing to develop their young talent, their lineup could catapult to the top of the league.

No one should expect the Giants to be an offensive juggernaut in 2021. However, if they can replicate their 2020 success, it’s a great sign that manager Gabe Kapler’s coaching staff and Farhan Zaidi’s front office are well equipped to maximize their talent. With their farm system on the rise and plenty of payroll flexibility, that’s an ideal recipe for success.

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