SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants put Buster Posey on the seven-day concussion disabled list Tuesday, with Tim Federowicz getting called up to back up Nick Hundley. To clear a spot for Federowicz, who was not on the 40-man roster, right-hander Clayton Blackburn was designated for assignment.
Posey was said to be feeling alright Tuesday, but the team committed to making the move out of an abundance of caution. There was no need to take any risks given Posey’s position, a source told NBC Sports Bay Area.
Posey was hit on the back of the helmet by a 94 mph Taijuan Walker fastball in the first inning of Monday’s home opener. He sat down, waiting for trainer Dave Groeschner with a dazed look on his face. Groeschner immediately pulled Posey from the game and took him to the clubhouse for tests, which Posey passed.
Posey told teammates that he felt normal, and that he was not experiencing the symptoms he expected. On his way out of the ballpark, Posey told NBC Bay Area that he felt fine. But the training staff monitored Posey overnight to make sure he did not have a delayed reaction.
The Giants have embraced a much more proactive approach to concussions after several players suffered from late-showing symptoms in recent years. Brandon Belt missed 12 games with a concussion in 2014, returned too early, and then missed another 34 games after seeing a specialist. Joe Panik played for over a week after getting hit in the head last season and then ended up missing 23 games after he revealed that he didn’t feel right.
Major League Baseball instituted a seven-day concussion DL for situations like this one, although it was unclear how much time Posey is expected to miss. He was set to address the media before Tuesday's game.
Federowicz has played 106 big league games for the Dodgers and Cubs. He hit .323 this spring with seven doubles and did such a solid job with the staff that Bruce Bochy identified his group of four catchers as the deepest he has ever had. Federowicz reworked the late-March opt-out in his contract and accepted an assignment to Triple-A Sacramento.
Trevor Brown was previously the third catcher on the 40-man roster, but he started the season on the DL with an ankle injury and in recent days he has been worn down by an illness.
Blackburn, 24, won the Pacific Coast League ERA title in 2015 but he had a 4.36 ERA in 2016. A right-hander with a varied pitch mix and strong command, Blackburn seems a solid bet to find a 40-man job elsewhere. With the Giants, he had fallen behind other young starters like Ty Blach and Tyler Beede.