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Carlos Beltran will produce, who else is going to step up?
The Giants are heading into the stretch run with many of the same questions still unanswered about their offense. Carlos Beltran, Jeff Keppinger and Orlando Cabrera have been nice, much-needed pickups and will prove to be vital in whatever success the Giants have for the rest of the year.
The team will still live and die, though, on the production or lack of production from key players like Andres Torres and Aubrey Huff.
Huff and Torres continue to be mere shells of the players that they were last year, when they truly were the catalysts of the Giants' run to the World Series. There clearly were other contributors, mainly Buster Posey and Freddy Sanchez, who are not available this year, but those two players have to pick up the pace.
Beltran is going to hit, and if the Giants can put runners on in front of him, they will benefit from his presence in the lineup. Bruce Bochy will have to work his magic, tinkering with the lineup to find just the right combination to maximize scoring opportunities. Brian Sabean will most likely try to find this year's Cody Ross on the waiver wire, but by and large, this is the team that will have to get it done.
If Huff and Torres continue to struggle, Bochy will have no choice but to find ways to replace their at-bats with someone who will produce. That is why Ross started in center field on Monday night and why Brandon Belt is here. Eventually, these guys will force the issue.