Happy Wednesday, San Francisco Giants fans. The Giants are currently riding a four-game winning streak, and that’s cause for celebration if you ask me. It’s also cause for celebration if you didn’t ask me, so...
Tuesday’s thrilling victory was a celebration of a Giants catcher, as Giants Rule 5 selection Blake Sabol — clinging to a roster spot as an unprotected rookie — hit a walk-off home run when the Giants were down to their final strike.
But before the game, there was other good news involving a Giants catcher: Joey Bart is unlikely to hit the Injured List.
Bart came out of Monday’s win after legging out a double, and was walking gingerly. He said after the game that he’d been dealing with a minor groin soreness issue for a while, but was hoping he was OK.
For now, it seems like he is. Prior to Tuesday’s game, Bart and Gabe Kapler both said he’s unlikely to be placed on the Injured List after an MRI came back clean. Bart even said he was available to play on Tuesday, though that may have just been bluffing.
Joey Bart’s MRI didn’t show any major issues, he’s confident he can avoid IL. He said he can get behind plate if needed. Blake Sabol is starting tonight. https://t.co/EnRGEPoViG— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) April 25, 2023
If Bart — who has already been on the IL this year — can avoid another stint, that would be huge for the Giants. After placing Roberto Pérez on the 60-day IL, and designating Austin Wynns for assignment, Bart and Sabol are the only catchers on the 40-man roster. If Bart has to be placed on the IL, the Giants would need to add a catcher to both the 40-man and active rosters.
The likely choices would be the two players in Sacramento: prospect Ricardo Genovés (who was on the taxi squad last night), or veteran All-Star Gary Sánchez. Neither option is ideal, especially when you consider that the team would need to clear a spot on the 40-man roster. The Giants probably don’t want to add Genovés — who is still just 23, and barely has 200 plate appearances in AAA — to the roster before they think he’s ready. They already have a handful of prospects on the 40 who aren’t yet ready to contribute.
And they probably don’t want to add Sánchez, whose prorated $4 million salary will become guaranteed if he’s added to the roster. Sánchez can opt out if he’s not added to the roster by May 1, but so far he’s hitting just 7-44 with 1 double and 15 strikeouts in Sacramento. The Giants probably aren’t eager to commit to that just yet.
So it’s good news that Bart will likely stay on the active roster. Not only does that save the Giants from having to make some difficult roster decisions, but it means Bart gets to keep playing, and he’s been off to a lovely start to the season.
What time do the Giants play today?
The Giants play the third game of a four-game series against the Cardinals tonight at 6:45 p.m. PT. Also, the Golden State Warriors are playing the Sacramento Kings at 7:00 p.m. PT. Big day for the Mission Bay teams.