Newman was sent down to minor-league camp Thursday, David Adler of MLB.com reports.
Newman went 5-for-19 with two RBI and three stolen bases in 12 spring training games. He's expected to begin the season with Triple-A Indianapolis.
Newman has played spring games at second base in addition to seeing time at shortstop, the Rob Biertempfel of the Athletic reports. "It's adding versatility," manager Clint Hurdle said of putting Newman at second. "It's giving him options if something happens where he's not just a shortstop."
Although he hasn't played a position other than shortstop since high school, he made a fine diving play at second base Wednesday. Newman slashed a middling .267/.311/.363 in 509 minor-league at-bats in 2017, but he's hit .283 overall in the minors. While the 2015 first-round draft pick likely won't hit for power (11 homers in three seasons), he could eventually help fantasy teams in the batting average category.
Newman was promoted to Triple-A Indianapolis on Thursday.
The first-round draft pick (2015) didn't overwhelm anyone with the bat at Double-A this season, as his slash line was just .259/.310/.359. Newman was heralded as a solid middle infield prospect after mashing at the lower levels of the minor leagues, but his prospect shine has faded a bit after showing little power and posting a rough batting average in a repeat of the Double-A level.
Newman (forehead) is back in action for Double-A Altoona. He is hitting .261/.328/.353 with one home run and zero steals on one attempt.
The Pirates' potential shortstop of the future was hit in the head by a 94 mph fastball on May 10, but was back in the lineup on May 12 after showing no concussion symptoms. This has been a disappointing start to the season for the 23-year-old, as he was expected to have his way with Double-A pitching in a return trip to the Eastern League. He also has not yet shown any sign that more power is coming.
Double-A Altoona manager Michael Ryan said that Newman was diagnosed with a forehead contusion after the infielder exited Wednesday's game upon being struck with a fastball.
Newman is experiencing no concussion symptoms and is being viewed as day-to-day, a welcome outcome considering the scary nature of the incident. The 23-year-old shortstop, who is one of the top position prospects in the organization, is hitting .267/.336/.371 with one homer and no steals across 116 plate appearances on the season.
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