In the wake of the season ending injury to catcher Buster Posey and lesser injuries to two other players, the San Francisco Giants have called up rookie left fielder/first baseman Brandon Belt, shortstop Brandon Crawford, and catcher Chris Stewart. They will join the team on Thursday May 26th.
Posey suffered what will likely be a season ending broken leg when Marlin’s outfielder Scott Cousins flattened him in a collision at home plate in the top of the 12th inning of last night’s game. Rookie Chris Stewart will now be the back-up catcher behind Eli Whiteside, who has been Posey’s back-up for the past year. Stewart hit .321 in 20 2011 Spring Training games with 3 doubles and 1 triple. Stewart is hitting .221 with a .586 OPS in Fresno this year.
In the same game with the Marlins last night, infielder Mike Fontenot suffered a strained left groin. He will go on the DL and be replaced by defensive phenom Brandon Crawford. Crawford was on a rehab assignment at Single A San Jose, where he was hitting .322.
Speedy outfielder Darren Ford sprained his ankle scoring the winning run against the Oakland Athletics in the bottom of the 11th inning in last Sunday’s game, and will be replaced by hard hitting Brandon Belt, who is batting .377 with a .994 OPS at Triple A Fresno.
The loss of Buster Posey confronts the Giants’ organization with a tremendous challenge, as they are forced to rely on three rookie players to keep the positive momentum of their 2011 season going strong. The Giants are currently in 1st place in the National League West, 2.5 games ahead of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Their team-oriented approach to building an offensive in support of the best pitching in baseball will be a huge advantage as they attempt to replace critical missing pieces on their roster.