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Power outage doesn't concern Scioscia

Power outage doesn't concern Scioscia

TORONTO -- Sitting in the visiting manager's office at Rogers Centre prior to Thursday's game against Toronto, Angels manager Mike Scioscia was discussing the makeup of his batting lineup.

One of the topics that eventually came up was the rather obvious issue about the group's glaring weakness -- power in the form of home runs.

The Angels have simply been a team this year that has had to make do without the luxury of having many balls travel past the outfield fence. Entering Thursday, Los Angeles ranked dead last in the American League with 41 home runs.

However, despite the numbers, Scioscia says he has reasons to be positive.

"There is power potential in this lineup and I'm sure we're going to see us start to drive the ball as the season goes on," Scioscia said. "We were really poor in the first eight weeks, so if the potential is there, you would imagine you're going to start to hit at a better pace as we move forward."

Looking at the numbers, there is proof that the Angels have gone through similar circumstances before. After 51 games last season, the Angels had belted 45 home runs, which is similar to this year's output. Yet, during the final 111 games of the 2008 season, the Halos went on to record 114 homers. Their 159 long balls last year ranked ninth in the American League.

The problem this year for the Halos is that too many players in their lineup are hitting homers at a pace lower than their typical career numbers.

One such culprit has been Bobby Abreu. Though he did homer in Wednesday's win, it was just his second in 48 games this season. That pace represents one of the worst in his 14-year career, during which he has averaged 21 homers a season.

While Abreu hasn't been hitting for power, Scioscia has been impressed with the right fielder's ability to draw walks and get on base.

"The one thing about Bobby, is that he's a professional hitter," Scioscia said. "He works counts and that's something our lineup desperately needed. He has the ability to drive the ball, although maybe right now, his power numbers aren't what they can be.

"I think he just gets a little frustrated when he's not driving the ball to his capability. But we understand how important it is for him to work counts and get on base, and he's been terrific."

David Singh is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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