Brandon Belt took another step forward as a professional hitter in 2016, but it was tough to notice from a fantasy perspective. The noticeable improvement was in his plate discipline, finishing with a .394 on-base percentage, good enough for fourth among all first basemen. Unless his owners participated in leagues that count on-base percentage, then they were likely left wanting more from Belt. He'll never be the power threat many thought he would be when he broke into the league, but he will get on-base at an elite clip and provide mid-level counting stats. The only potential for improvement would be if manager Bruce Bochy elects to move him to second in the batting order (something he experimented with for seven games last season), or if he begins to steal bases again. The former would create more potential for runs if he can get on in front of Buster Posey, Hunter Pence and Brandon Crawford.
Belt is not in the lineup Tuesday against the Dodgers, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Belt will take a seat as the Dodgers send Clayton Kershaw to the mound, given he is just 3-for-51 (.059) over his career against the southpaw. Buster Posey will take over at first base for the game while Nick Hundley serves as the backstop. Belt is batting .247 with four homers and nine RBI through 19 games (73 at-bats) this season.
Belt went 2-for-4 with a walk and his fourth home run of the season in Friday's 6-5 loss to the Rockies. The veteran first baseman extended his hitting streak to six games with the effort. He's batting just .238 through the first few weeks of the season, but his .351 on-base percentage is right where owners would expect it to be. Belt's ability to get on base coupled with his new spot batting second in the order has led to an early influx of runs (10) to complement his modest power.
Belt is not in the lineup Saturday against Colorado, Thomas Harding of MLB.com reports. Belt has notched three home runs and seven RBI thus far, but he's hitting just .191 through his first 47 at-bats. He'll get the day off Saturday as the Giants go with Conor Gillaspie at first base.
Belt went 0-for-3 at the plate Wednesday, but he reached based twice via walks and scored once in a win over Arizona. The veteran continues to bat second and provide fantasy owners with solid counting stats early on (seven runs, three home runs, seven RBI and a steal). Belt's batting average (.184) is the only unsavory part of his stat line, but the career-.271 hitter will get that up sooner rather than later.
Belt went 2-for-4 with two homers and five RBI on Friday against the Padres. Belt blasted a grand slam to give the Giants a brief lead in the sixth inning before homering again in the eighth to bring the team within a single run in a losing effort. He's connected for three homers and six hits over his last four games, and the power is especially welcomed by fantasy owners who haven't seen the veteran hit more than 18 bombs in any season to date.
|vs SAN DIEGO||3/11||.273||2||5||0||2||0|
|vs PERDOMO (CAREER)||3/10||.300||1||0||0||0||3|