According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, Brandon Belt of the San Francisco Giants is available.
This isn’t really news. We all knew that there was a high likelihood the San Francisco Giants would explore trading Belt this offseason. Although he was an integral part of two championships, he’s been much maligned by injury.
Not to mention, as Craig Calcaterra of NBC Sports points out, the fact that he turns 31 next year and will make $48 million over the next three seasons. This begs the question,”Who would want to trade for Brandon Belt?”
While many Giants fans have called for Belt’s ousting by way of trade for some time now, the Giants have stuck with him. The thought process always went that if he stayed healthy for a full year he’d make it clear that he was one of the preeminent first basemen in the National League.
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Well, unfortunately he hasn’t been able to have that full season that we’ve all dreamed of. Last year it appeared he was on track as he was hitting over .300 and was on pace for more than 20 home runs, which by the Giants’ standards may as well be 40, before an appendectomy and knee injury derailed his season.
It’s not his fault that he’s been banged up so much. We all know that he’s had weird concussions where he was hit in the head with a ball so it’s not like he’s galavanting around on a dirt-bike or something insane like that.
To answer the question I posed earlier, a team that would want to trade for Belt would be a team that thinks they can make a title run in 2019 and needs a solid first baseman. I’m not sure what the Giants would be able to get in return though.
I certainly wouldn’t imagine they’d get premium prospects unless a team was really desperate. Plus, unless they got a serviceable first baseman in free agency or by trade, they’d be without a decent first baseman for 2019 barring putting Buster Posey permanently at first base which seems unlikely.
The only way the Giants trade Belt is if they decide they simply can’t compete in 2019 and they fancy whatever players they’re offered in return for Belt. I don’t really trust Nightengale, and maybe it just has something to do with a personal dislike for USA Today but I know I won’t be taking his word as gospel.
Only time will tell what the Giraffe’s fate will be. Brandon Belt is a good ballplayer and I still believe that he can be a good Giant, but maybe a change of scenery is what he needs to unleash his true capabilities.