UPDATE, 4:41 PM ET: The Giants placed Belt on the 10-day disabled list on Saturday. In a corresponding move, they reinstated second baseman Alen Hanson from the disabled list, where he was rehabbing a left hamstring strain.
Giants first baseman Brandon Belt made it through just two innings of Friday’s series opener against the Phillies. After his first at-bat — a swinging strikeout against Philadelphia’s Nick Pivetta — the infielder appeared to be in serious pain and was quickly removed from the game and sent to a local hospital to be evaluated and treated for appendicitis.
The Giants confirmed the emergency appendectomy on Saturday and are expected to place Belt on the 10-day disabled list sometime this weekend. Belt tweeted out a photo from the hospital following the procedure; while it looks like he’s on the road to recovery, a definite timetable for his return to the team has yet to be established.
Pablo Sandoval stepped in for the ailing first baseman on Friday and could split time there with Buster Posey until Belt’s return. Per Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Belt isn’t the first Giants player to undergo an appendectomy in recent years. Former MLB outfielder Andres Torres underwent the same procedure back in 2010 and needed just under two weeks to make a full recovery, though time will tell if Belt can recover as speedily following his surgery.
Prior to the incident, the 30-year-old infielder was among the team’s top producers at the plate, boasting a .307/.403/.547 batting line, 11 home runs and a .950 OPS through 226 plate appearances. This is his first major health scare of the season; he’s been injury-free since last August, when he was struck in the head by a pitch and missed nearly two months on the disabled list.