Brandon Belt left Friday’s game to undergo an emergency appendectomy

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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.

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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.

Phillies select active duty Navy aviator in MLB Rule 5 draft

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SAN DIEGO — The Philadelphia Phillies took U.S. Navy aviator Noah Song in the Rule 5 draft Wednesday, hoping the former top pitching prospect can still be effective once he completes his military service.

There is no definitive date on when the 25-year-old Song might be able to join the Phillies.

Song was picked from the Boston Red Sox system in the draft for unprotected minor league players. Philadelphia put him on the military list while he continues his active duty and he won’t count on the 40-man roster, the pool from which major league teams can select players for the 26-man active roster.

Song impressed in his only pro season, making seven starts for Boston’s Class A Lowell affiliate in 2019, with a 1.06 ERA and 19 strikeouts in 17 innings. With a fastball clocked in the upper 90s mph, the right-hander dominated that year as a senior at the U.S. Naval Academy, going 11-1 with a 1.44 ERA and 161 strikeouts in 94 innings.

The Red Sox drafted Song in the fourth round – he likely would’ve gone much higher, but his impending military service caused teams to back off.

In November 2019, Defense Secretary Mark Esper signed a memo clearing the way for athletes at the nation’s military academies to delay their service commitments and play pro sports after graduation. Song’s request to have those new rules retroactively applied to his case was denied.

Song began school as a flight officer in the summer of 2020 and finished that phase last April. He started additional aviation training in May.

Song was among the 15 players, including three Boston pitchers, taken in the big league phase of the Rule 5 draft, which wasn’t held last year because of the MLB lockout.

Washington took righty Thad Ward from Boston’s Triple-A roster with the first pick. Baltimore took Red Sox minor league pitcher Andrew Politi with the ninth choice and the Phillies chose Song with the 11th selection.

Teams pay $100,000 to take players in the major league portion of the Rule 5 draft. The players must stay on the big league roster next season or go on waivers and, if unclaimed, be offered back to their original organization for $50,000.