The BB9 Captain era is officially over. According to multiple reports, Brandon Belt’s tenure with the San Francisco Giants is over, as the first baseman signed a one-year, $9.3 million deal with the Toronto Blue Jays.
The news was first reported by Susan Slusser of The San Francisco Chronicle, who noted that the Giants were talking with Belt but that the “Blue Jays moved faster.” Belt has reportedly already passed his physical, and is feeling fully recovered from knee surgery.
Giants had spoken to Belt but the Blue Jays moved faster to get something done.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) January 10, 2023
I would assume there’s more to the story than just the Blue Jays moving faster. Belt openly wanted to return to the Giants, and I see no reason to doubt his sincerity. If the Giants wanted Belt back in their lineup, it seems likely that they’d have him. But perhaps they were not willing to commit the same amount of money that Toronto was willing to.
For Belt, it will be the first time in his career that he plays for another team. The 2016 All-Star was drafted by the Giants in the fifth round in 2009, and made his MLB debut on March 31, 2011. He played 1,310 regular season games for the Giants, and another 37 postseason games. He’s been the team’s opening day first baseman in 11 of the last 12 seasons.
Brandon Crawford is now the only remaining player from any of the Giants championship teams.
With MLB changing the schedule starting in 2023, so that all teams play each other, the Giants will get a chance to face Belt, but he won’t get to play at Oracle Park. The Giants head to Canada to play the Blue Jays June 27-29.
Give ‘em hell, BB9.