Joey Bart

Why Giants believe Joey Bart can have 'great comeback' from his injury

Why Giants believe Joey Bart can have 'great comeback' from his injury

The San Jose Giants' game Monday was scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at Excite Ballpark. Perhaps for the first time ever, the whole Giants organization must be wishing a game was postponed by rain.

Instead, the tarp came on, and the game was delayed an hour with first pitch at 7:30 p.m. Field conditions remained wet, and the worst scenario occurred for Giants top prospect Joey Bart in the fourth inning, when a fastball hit him on his left hand and fractured the second metacarpal.

Bart will be in a cast and is expected to miss the next 4 to 6 weeks. The Giants are disappointed in the news, but they believe there's still plenty of positives for the catcher to take away off the field.

“It’s a setback, and it sets him up for a great comeback," Giants farm director Kyle Haines said to Joe Ritzo on Tuesday on the Inside The San Jose Giants Podcast. "It’s something that he’s gonna have to go through a lot of adversity, and this is something that will set him back and challenge him mentally. It gives him opportunities to maybe grow in other ways off the field, just with his knowledge and maybe take a step back.

"Maybe we can take some positives from this and teach him some things that aren’t necessarily between the lines and help his development there." 

The talent is there for Bart. The Giants knew that long before taking him with the No. 2 pick in the 2018 MLB Draft. His mental makeup, however, is what's really impressed Haines and the rest of the Giants’ front office. 

“He came here really eager to show people what he could do on the field,” Haines said. “Joey stepped on the field, and from Day 1 has wanted to be a leader and key part of this team and help this team win.”

At the time of his injury, Bart was batting .270 with two home runs, eight RBI and an .882 OPS. He's also already thrown out seven base runners and picked off several more. How he's handled San Jose's pitching staff is what really encourages Haines. 

"It’s fantastic to watch him interact with the pitchers and learn them,” he said, “because he takes a lot of pride in his defense and his ability to work with pitchers, which is such a rare thing to see with someone who has such stardom to him.” 

Bart's arm strength stands out right away. It's been a real weapon in his first nine games behind the dish this season. Though his defense is highly regarded, Bart's receiving skills can use work at times. And he's done just that, constantly seeking advice and reviewing film on his defense.

Haines said Bart's receiving alone saved runs for San Jose in the team's opening series in Visalia. 

“He takes a lot of pride in saving his team extra base runners and runs with his receiving alone," Haines said. "It’s a rare quality to have because everyone goes to the batting average and things that look a little flashier, but he loves diving in deeper and asking, ‘Hey, how can I help this team?’ “

[RELATED: Bart, Ramos' San Jose Giants debut shows promise]

There's no doubt Bart still is on the fast track to the big leagues. Giants manager was Bruce Bochy admitted Wednesday, though, that he doesn't expect Bart to make his big league debut this year, in part because of his injury.

To make up for lost at-bats, Haines said Bart could be given an Arizona Fall League assignment after the season.

For now, the Giants will play it safe with their top prospect. From his skills to his intangibles, though, it's clear a healthy Bart will be in the bigs in no time. 

Joey Bart not expected to make Giants debut in 2019, Bruce Bochy says

Joey Bart not expected to make Giants debut in 2019, Bruce Bochy says

Joey Bart was on the fast track to the big leagues. After fracturing his left hand Monday night in a San Jose Giants game, it appears his road to San Francisco will have to wait until 2020. 

Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Wednesday morning he doesn't expect Bart to be in the majors at any point this season. 

"I would not expect him to be up this year," Bochy said on the Murph & Mac Show. "... It's (the injury) bad news for us and him. He was playing so well. What we have to be careful of is we don't rush this kid back after breaking his hand. He'll be in a cast for a couple of weeks, and then we have to make sure he's ready.

"Don't rush him back. Let him take his time. We can't put him on too fast of a pace to get him up here."

Bart was hit by a pitch in the fourth inning against the Stockton Ports on a night where wet weather delayed the start of the game by an hour. He tried to stay in the game, but after being looked at by the team trainer it was deemed he needed to come out. The Giants' top prospect will now miss the next four-to-six weeks with a fractured second metacarpal. 

“He was playing well,” Bochy said to reporters on Tuesday. “He’ll be back. You hate to see it, though. He’s going to miss some time and it’s a minor setback. You just hate to see it for the kid. He had a great spring and was off to a great start.”

Bart, the No. 2 pick in the 2018 MLB Draft, spent spring training in big league camp and showed he belonged with major leaguers. The catcher hit .350 with one home run, seven RBI and a .981 OPS over 15 spring games. He also won the Barney Nugent Award, which is given annually to the player who performs best in his first big league camp.

[RELATED: Bart, Ramos' San Jose Giants debut shows promise]

His offense followed him to San Jose, the Giants' High-A affiliate, before the injury. Through 10 games, Bart was batting .270 with two home runs, eight RBI and an .882 OPS. Bochy took notice to Bart's hot start, but now everyone will have to take a step back. 

“There’s a lot of baseball left,” Bochy said on Tuesday. “He’ll have a lot of baseball left to be played.”

Joey Bart injury: Bruce Bochy reacts to Giants' top prospect fracturing hand

Joey Bart injury: Bruce Bochy reacts to Giants' top prospect fracturing hand

WASHINGTON D.C. — The best Giants prospect in years has had a setback in his first full professional season.

Catcher Joey Bart suffered a fractured second metacarpal on his left hand when he was hit by a pitch Monday night in San Jose. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Bart will be in a cast for two weeks and likely will be sidelined for four to six weeks.

Bart, the top catching prospect in the minors, is off to a hot start in San Jose, posting a .882 OPS through 10 games. He has two homers and eight RBIs and has impressed with his defense behind the plate.

“He was playing well,” Bochy said. “He’ll be back. You hate to see it, though. He’s going to miss some time and it’s a minor setback. You just hate to see it for the kid. He had a great spring and was off to a great start.”

Bart isn’t expected to return to action until late May or June, which will slow what looked to be a meteoric rise through the minors. There was a decent chance he would have been promoted to Double-A by then, and a September call-up was in play after Bart’s impressive spring. Bochy wouldn’t close the door on that possibility.

[RELATED: Bart, Ramos' San Jose Giants debut shows promise that awaits]

“There’s a lot of baseball left,” he said. “He’ll have a lot of baseball left to be played.”