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SF Giants: Three Key Takeaways From the Reds Series

CINCINNATI, OHIO - MAY 20: Steven Duggar #6 of the San Francisco Giants hits a single in the fifth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on May 20, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OHIO - MAY 20: Steven Duggar #6 of the San Francisco Giants hits a single in the fifth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ball Park on May 20, 2021 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
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PITTSBURGH, PA – MAY 15: Darin Ruf #33 of the SF Giants hits a solo home run in the first inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on May 15, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

The SF Giants completed the sweep against the Cincinnati Reds on the road with a convincing 19-4 victory. The sweep gives San Francisco a 28-16 overall record, which is currently the best record in baseball.

SF Giants: Three Key Takeaways From the Reds Series

1. Key Contributions from Darin Ruf and Steven Duggar

There were plenty of positives from this series, but the contributions from Darin Ruf and Steven Duggar stand out as a key observation.

Ruf’s role is to do damage against left-handed pitching, whereas Duggar’s role remains up in the air. However, Duggar continues to show growth at the plate in a limited sample.

His timing could not come at a better time as the Giants battle injuries in the field that has forced Mauricio Dubón to see more time at second base. On that same note, Austin Slater has produced mixed results in 2021, leaving the door open for someone like Duggar to earn more playing time.

The left-handed bat only saw one at-bat in each of the first three games, but he put together a tremendous performance in the final game of the series.

After grounding out in his first at-bat, he stepped into the batter’s box to face off against Michael Feliz. Duggar worked the count full, fouling a couple of pitches off in the process, and slammed the seventh pitch of the at-bat for a grand slam.

He added one more single later in the game and now has a .256/.319/.488 line across 43 a-bats. The 27-year-old has earned a few extra at-bats with his recent play.

Similarly, Darin Ruf capped off a strong series at the plate. He collected six hits in 17 at-bats, including a two-run blast and two doubles in the final game of the series. Furthermore, the right-handed bat coaxed three walks, so he was on base quite a bit.

Ruf fills an important platoon role for the Giants, and Duggar could as well if he continues to produce. This was a strong series for both players.

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