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San Francisco Giants: Paging Doctor Offense: Power Needed

Andy Bensch@@AndyBenschSenior Writer IJune 3, 2009

NEW YORK - APRIL 18:  Mark DeRosa #7 of the Cleveland Indians celebrates hitting a three run home run iwith scoring batters Grady Sizemore #24 and Ben Francisco #12 against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on April 18, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

When it comes to building a successful major league baseball team, having players who can drive the ball out of the ballpark is paramount.

To most...that would seem obvious, but to Giants general manager Brian Sabean that might not be the case.

Ever since San Francisco's upper management ushered Barry Bonds away after his record-breaking home run year of 2007, the Giants have ranked dead last in home runs with just 120 home runs since the conclusion of 2007.

With the Giants pitching staff having the talent of a postseason staff, it is a disgrace to the San Francisco faithful to be rewarding that talent with by far the league low in home runs.

Now, since the Giants fans were treated with a tremendous amount of long balls in the past, they are well aware of the importance of the big fly.

But unfortunately for the Giants, their general manager has failed to give those who pay his salary (the fans) a true power hitter to cheer for.

The No. 4 position in the lineup is meant for a true power hitter, but the main Giants player to hit in that spot is not a true power hitter.

Bengie Molina would be hitting sixth or lower for most other teams.

After today's loss to the Nationals, Molina's average is below .250. 

It's an absolutely pathetic .247 for a cleanup hitter and just eight home runs.

Molina's offensive numbers for a catcher are still above average, but when Molina is suppose to be the big bat in the lineup those numbers then become below average.

However, Molina is not the problem. 

The problem with the Giants is the power production from their corner outfield positions.

With most big league clubs, the players who man the corner outfield positions are often key power hitters.

But, heading into today's game, the Giants' corner outfielders—Randy Winn and Fred Lewis—have combined for just five home runs and 28 RBI. Adding those numbers together equals 33 (hrs + RBI) which is good enough for 28th in the league.

In fact, the league average for home runs and RBI by the starting corner outfielders is 11.5 home runs and 45.5 RBI.

The Giant corner outfielders numbers are far too below average for the Giants to think they can actually compete with that production.

However, despite the lack of power, the Giants sit at .500 and 25-25 after their most recent loss.

That being said, they do not need to trade away a pitcher with the talent of Matt Cain in order to bring in a major power bat.

The Giants can stay in the hunt for the playoffs deep into the season with bringing in a minor power bat.

Packaging a deal around Jonathan Sanchez and including right-fielder Randy Winn should be enough to sway the Cleveland Indians into giving up corner outfielder/infielder Mark DeRosa.

DeRosa is hitting .262 on the season with eight home runs and 34 RBI. Even though the power numbers may appear similar to Molina, DeRosa has the potential to hit 20-25 home runs. 

He can also play second and third base as well as the outfield.

Molina, on the other hand, plays only catcher and has never hit 20 or more home runs in a single season.

When you add the HR and RBI numbers of DeRosa to those of Giants left fielder Fred Lewis, the total is almost near the league average as mentioned above. Lewis and DeRosa right now combine for 11 home runs and 42 RBI.

Last season with the Cubs, DeRosa hit .285 with 21 HR and 87 RBI. Numbers similar to those would be a huge boost to the Giants offense, especially from the corner outfield position.

With the Giants hovering around .500, a boost of some power will go a long way in keeping them in the hunt for the playoffs.

The only power for the Giants, coming up through their system, is catcher Buster Posey and 1B Angel Villalona who are both still two years away or more from being relied upon power hitters at the big league level.

Therefore, if the Giants want to prove to their fans that they want to win now as well as in the future, they need to make a trade for a power bat or at least make an offseason signing before next season to boost power production.

Although, with a team like the Giants who are hovering around .500, a trade for a player like DeRosa might be enough to push the team into this year's postseason.

More often than not, San Francisco has an edge in the starting pitching matchup. With a bit more power in the lineup, their pitching staff just might start to take off...posting a large number of victories.

However, if the Giants decide to stand pat with the third worst power numbers from corner outfielders and Bengie Molina hitting cleanup, even the Giants pitching won't be enough to make the playoffs. 

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