A pair of San Francisco Giants top prospects moved one step closer to the majors recently when Heliot Ramos and Joey Bart were promoted to Double-A. Who will be first to reach the majors?
That’s a good indication that both players are demonstrating the ability to make the necessary adjustments and improving as hoped, which is exactly what you want to see out of an organization’s top prospects.
The question now becomes which young standout will reach the major leagues first. The answer depends on a number of factors, the first of which is obviously the needs of the big league club.
It seems unlikely that either top prospect will be called up for the final months of the 2019 season since the Giants are pretty well set at catcher and in the outfield.
They have Buster Posey and Stephen Vogt behind the plate, while Kevin Pillar and Mike Yastrzemski are both raking in a crowded outfield. So even with injuries to Alex Dickerson and Steven Duggar, there is no reason to panic and call Ramos up before he is ready.
However, looking ahead to next year, there is a realistic possibility that an injury or an underperforming incumbent at one of those positions could open the door for Bart or Ramos to get the call.
At 22 years old, Bart is three years older than Ramos, and he is the more polished player offensively and more developed physically. Add to that his extremely impressive performance during this year’s spring training and the logical conclusion would seem to be that he will be the first to arrive in the majors.
Of course, both players will need to avoid injury to continue on their current path. Bart missed significant time earlier this season with a fractured wrist, while Ramos was sidelined with a knee injury.
There’s also the matter of what to do with Buster Posey.
The 32-year-old is signed through the 2021 season, and first baseman Brandon Belt is also inked through 2021, so there’s no clear answer to how Bart moves into the starting lineup in 2020.
It’s a good problem to have and the kind of thing that will sort itself out when the time comes.
Regardless of who arrives first, the San Francisco Giants have two potential cornerstone pieces in Joey Bart and Heliot Ramos now playing at the Double-A level, so it’s only a matter of time before they reach the big leagues.