Breaking down San Francisco Giants’ first-inning hitting woes of 2019

San Francisco Giants’ Buster Posey walks to the dugout after striking out against the Colorado Rockies during the fourth inning of a baseball game in San Francisco, Sunday, April 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Thursday marked the 20th game of the 2019 season, and the San Francisco Giants still haven’t scored in the first inning.

After the Rockies scored two runs on Monday, the Giants became the last team in the majors with zero first-inning runs this season.

So we decided it was time to run down some numbers on the Giants in the first inning this season.

  • The Giants are hitting .095 (6 for 63) in the first inning.
  • The Giants have six hits (all singles), two walks and one hit by pitch in the first inning this season (.091 OBP).
  • Of the nine first-inning base runners that Giants have had this season, three came in the same game (April 11 vs. Rockies. Duggar led off with single but was caught stealing. Posey then had a two-out single and Belt a two-out walk).
  • In 20 games, the Giants have put a runner into scoring position once — in the aforementioned game.
  • Three of the Giants’ first-inning hits are from Steven Duggar in consecutive games from April 11-13.
  • In all three of those aforementioned games, Duggar was erased on the base paths (caught stealing, two double plays).
  • The Giants have gone down in order in 12 of 20 games, including seven in a row from March 31 to April 8.
  • The Giants have sent just three batters to the plate in the first inning in 15 of 20 games.
  • The Giants have averaged 13.15 pitches seen in the first inning this season.
  • If you exclude the 27-pitch first inning the Giants had against the Rockies’ Jon Gray on April 11, the Giants have averaged 12.42 pitches seen in the first inning.
  • OPS+ split rates a batter’s success against the league average. An OPS+ of 100 or greater indicates a batter is doing better than the league average — less than 100 worse than league average. The Giants’ first-inning OPS+ split is -31.
  • If you think this first-inning struggle is just an early-season fluke, the Giants hit .229 in the first inning in 2018, only worse in the seventh (.228) and ninth (.154) innings.
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