The Giants may have to open the season without their starting corner infielders, Kerry Crowley of the Bay Area News Group explains. First baseman Brandon Belt is dealing with a right heel problem, and third baseman Evan Longoria has a moderate oblique strain.
Manager Gabe Kapler said Belt took groundballs and ran Thursday, but he gave no timeline for when Belt or Longoria could make their season debuts. Pablo Sandoval and Wilmer Flores, who each have first and third base experience, seem like logical fill-in candidates if the Giants are shorthanded at one or both positions. Right now, it does seem as though the Giants will be without a good portion of their most established veterans on Opening Day. Before Belt and Longoria were in jeopardy, they lost Buster Posey for the entire season when he decided to opt out a week ago.
In better news for the club, outfielder Billy Hamilton and righty Luis Madero were cleared Thursday to participate, Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic relayed (Twitter links). Hamilton landed on the injured list for an undisclosed medical reason July 9, while Madero tested positive for COVID-19 on July 3. Between the two, only Hamilton had a chance at a season-opening roster spot, but because of the time he missed, Kapler no longer sees that as a realistic possibility.
Outfield prospect Hunter Bishop was another of the Giants’ recent positive COVID tests, but he’s also coming along. Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets that Bishop “feels great” and hasn’t dealt with any symptoms of late. But Bishop hasn’t rejoined the team because, as Schulman writes, he has had “trouble navigating the testing process in Arizona to get the negative tests he needs to be activated.”
did Sandoval already recover from TJS?
he has been hitting and throwing and even pitched in a game
He’s been eating too….a lot. Dude is huge
Yeah, yeah yeah, that’s getting mighty old. I’m sure he’s more athletic than you in every way. Maybe take a look in the mirror, bub.
What is your problem? Sandoval is a professional athlete? He showed up to camp completely out of shape. A total FATASS and you’re giving me a hard time?
honestly I am ok if belt and longo have to sit out for a while, it gives more opportunities to see what kind of options are available and how they play out – even though I always cheer for belt – it would be nice to see what other guys can do in a less important season
Especially want to see Darin Ruf at 1B.
Bishop is an interesting prospect to watch… and he’ll be one of the guys most hurt by no minor league season. He really didn’t do much his first 2 years in college and in the Cape League but then went on to have a MASSIVE junior year blasting 22 homers! However he didn’t play all that well in his first taste of professional action so he really needed to come back with a solid year this year in the minors and now that that won’t happen… it’ll be interesting to see how that effects him. Apparently the Giants think highly enough of him (obviously they took him in the first round last year) but that they’re going to carry him on their 60-man “roster” to get him some development time. But it’s too bad for him there won’t be a minor league season for him to really kind of get the experience he needs and to show if he can really play at the level he displayed in his final season in college… or if that was more of a fluke.
Giants have some players to deal at the deadline. Belt, Hamilton, Longoria etc. Yankees call the Giants for Hamilton they need some team speed desperately. Especially with new extra innings rule.
Nobody’s going to want any of those guys.
You’re right. These guys are going to have to provide sheer replacement value, or they are going to be candidates for platoons/DFAs.
Like most blanket statements, that just isn’t true. It is doubtful that anyone would want Hamilton, but either Belt or longo could help other teams. Longo is basically MLB average. The salary is the issue, but that can be worked out.
Belt could really thrive in a park better suited to him. There is probably no other player in baseball that is more penalized than he is for the park he plays in. Ballpark splits are difficult because of the small samples, but in parks where he has played a fair amount of games, that don’t hurt LH pull-hitters like he is, he has hit really well.
Fred is correct. No one wants those guys. Longo? Belt? Only Giants fans talk about Belt and they always attach ballpark metrics. Those just suck.
Your bias has been obvious for some time now and it’s clear that you’re just wrong.
Nobody wants these guys. They’re old or slow or both and they don’t produce at the plate
I don’t know, man. I’m a Giants fan, but I’ve come to see both of these guys as basically dead weight. They are essentially replacement value players, but they’re getting paid lots of money that makes them immovable. The Giants could maybe move them by eating 1/2 – 3/4 of their salaries, but at this point, they’ll probably just ride it out.
Yeah for that reason I am really interested to see how the park reconfig affects belt
Who will have a better average Belt or Hamilton by end of season?
Belt not in a contract transition year, but is has started hot in beginning of each season then goes into horrific extended slump either coming off injury or going into it.
Belt will have the better average and OBP. But that’s not saying much.
Belt has had one bad year. The fact that it was last season, and people have short attention spans, they think he’s comparable to someone like Hamilton. He’s not, and it’s not even close.
Until last season Belt had a career 124 OPS+, basically 24% better than the average MLB hitter. Even with last season his career OPS+ was 120.
Other than a minuscule 13 game span when Hamilton posted a 150 OPS+ in his first season, he’s been so far below MLB average, that I’m surprised he’s still getting chances. His career OPS+ is a pathetic 68. His highest in any full season was 81 in 2014, and it’s basically trended down every year since.
In Belt’s worst season, 2019, his OPS+ was 98, 17 points better than Hamilton in his most productive season.
Belt is WEAK compared to his contemporaries at 1B in the NL
Some of those guys are better than Belt. I never said otherwise. .This was about whether any other team would want Belt, not how Belt ranked among the top 1B in the league. There are 15 teams in the NL, and you’ve named only 6 who have better stats.
Belt with his 120 OPS+is comparable to Josh Bell and his 121 OPS+. But
Belt would be an upgrade over guys like Christian Walker (AZ 107 OPS+), Daniel Murphy (Col 115 OPS+), Eric Hosmer (SD 108 OPS+), Eric Thames (Mil 111 OPS+), Matt Adams (Was 106 OPS+), and Garret Cooper (Mia 107 OPS+).
Brandon Belt Sucks
trolls be trolling
Belt has been on the decline since 2016 and his 2015/16 were his highest points in his career. He has gone downhill and with age i doubt there is room to rebound. He is bottom feeder 1B a mistake resign.
His best stat his he gets on base via the walk.
1B are counted on to be a run producer and he has failed most of his career.
If he ever gets on a streak – Giants should trade him asap.
Now Belt in a hitters park – like CIN, PHI,COL, ARZ, etc I think he has some upswing value…if I were his agent I would pursue that route to revive his career – I think he would upgrade himself. Giants could get better return sending him to those places and with DH that could help in value.
Giants stadium seems to do the opposite what ARZ or COL stadiums do to their hitters, whilst they shine for their Pitchers.
It just won’t be Giants baseball without the seagulls showing up for dinner in the 7th.
Kumar Rocker or Jack Leiter come on down.