Replacing Angel Pagan? Leadoff with Hunter Pence


Angel Pagan was on pace for a career year in 2014. He was hitting .300, had 56 runs and 115 hits in the 96 games that he played before being shut down for the season and undergoing back surgery.

Being on pace to set career highs in most offensive categories is impressive, but the Giants record with Pagan making an appearance is the most impressive stat of all. The Giants were 57-39 in games that Pagan made an appearance in but 28-34 in games that he didn’t play.

As the center fielder and lead-off man, Pagan held a lot of responsibility for a team that looked like World Series favorites in the first two months of the season.

Now that he is out, the Giants will have to fill both of those roles for the playoffs which is starting to look like it might be a one-and-done situation.

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With just a few games left in the regular season, the Giants have to get things figured out fast. And I think the way to fix it is to use Hunter Pence as the lead-off hitter.

The Giants have used Pence as a lead-off hitter 30 times in Pagan’s absence already this season. The Giants are lacking in run producers with Mike Morse likely to miss the NL Wild Card game with an oblique injury.

They really need someone to get on base. With Pence, you get a guy who is guaranteed to run out every ground ball, work counts and score runs.

Pence has a 3.96 pitches per plate appearance, 105 runs scored and 27 infield hits, all of which lead the Giants’ other players. With a team that has been struggling to score in the games without Pagan, the Giants will have to scratch and claw for every run they score.

If you have to fight for every run, who better to top your line-up than Hunter Pence.

With injuries to Marco Scutaro and Brandon Belt and now to Angel Pagan for much of the season, the Giants have become accustomed to overcoming setbacks.

Much like their rivals the Los Angeles Dodgers have in the standings, injuries seem to have overtaken them. With just days until the start of the 2014 postseason, the Giants will be adjusting on the fly.

If they cant figure it out fast, their home fans may not get to see the struggling team play at AT&T Park at all.