The San Francisco Giants are off to a great start to the season. They are 10-6 and tied with the Los Angeles Dodgers for first place. More importantly, they are 4-2 against their bitter rivals from the South so far in the season. That’s a positive, as whoever wins the head to head matchup between those two teams will go along way toward determining the division winner.
The Giants pitching has been pretty good, the bullpen outstanding and the starting pitching is making progress after starting out the season slowly.
The Giants offense is off to a great start so far this season. They are top 5 in the National League in runs scored, home runs and number 7 in batting average. The offense has carried the team thus far in the early part of the season while the pitching staff is trying to catch up.
Even though the Giants offense is good the one thing that remains a problem is the batting order. Giants manager Bruce Bochy has continued to bat Pablo Sandoval third in the lineup when Sandoval is by average the worst hitter on the Giants so far this season.
The third spot should go to your best hitter, and based upon the early season results that should go to Brandon Belt. Ideally Buster Posey would be the guy that you would want occupying that spot, but he hasn’t had a great start to the season and Belt right now is a better hitter. Also Belt had lots of success batting third last year. In fact, most of his production came from batting in the third spot. Bochy has moved Belt between 2nd and 6th in the lineup depending upon the matchup ( righty or lefty), which makes no sense whatsoever.
Instead of Bochy moving everybody in the lineup around, which is still a major flaw that he has as a manager, he should find a combination and stick with it. At least until guys start hitting better. Based upon the results this season the lineup should be as follows: Angel Pagan, Brandon Crawford, Belt, Posey, Michael Morse, Hunter Pence, Sandoval, and whoever gets the start between Brandon Hicks or Joaquin Arias.
Hitting Crawford second right now makes sense considering that he’s had success there before and he’s much more suited for that role than Belt or Pence. Belt and Pence are supposed to be your run producers. The second spot is designed for a high contact, fundamental hitter. Crawford isn’t exactly Scutaro, but he’s much better than the free swinging Pence and the power hitting Belt.
As good of a manager as Bochy is he tends to over manage at times. Changing the lineup so many times this season is a perfect example. If he goes with the lineup proposed or something close to that the Giants will be more consistent on offense.