Prospect Review – Brandon Belt


The next prospect up to be reviewed is Brandon Belt of the San Francisco Giants.

The Basics
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
How Acquired: Drafted by the San Francisco Giants out of the University of Texas in the 5th round of the 2009 amateur draft.
Age as of 4/1/11: 22

Scouting Reports and Statistics
The Baseball Cube

Tm           Lg  G  AB  R   H HR RBI SB BB SO   BA  OBP  SLG
SanJose    CALL 77 269 62 103 10  62 18 58 50 .383 .492 .628
Richmond     EL 46 175 26  59  9  40  2 22 34 .337 .413 .623
Fresno      PCL 13  48 11  11  4  10  2 13 15 .229 .393 .563

Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 1/2/2011.

Prospect Ranks
Deep Leagues: #3 (First Basemen – 2011), #13 (Overall – 2011)
Project Prospect: #6 (First Basemen – 8/2010), #6 (Overall – 2011)
Bullpen Banter: #3 (First Basemen – 9/2010)
Baseball America: #4 (Eastern League – 10/2010), 2011 Team Rankings Not Released Yet
John Sickels: #1 (SFG – 2011) A-
Baseball Prospectus: 2011 Team Rankings Not Released Yet
Scouting Book: #5 (First Basemen – 2011)
Top Prospect Alert: #1 (SFG – 2011)

Analysis

Belt was drafted in the 5th round of the 2009 draft by the Giants, and while he was viewed as a solid prospect, he was not really considered anything special. After checking through some of the 2010 pre-season prospect rankings out there, I couldn’t find a single one that listed Belt as more than a fringe prospect. The thing that stands out at that time was that he wouldn’t be making his professional debut until 2010. He started his season in the offense heavy California League, and despite this put up a ridiculous .383/.492/.628 line with 10 homers, 62 rbi, and 18 stolen bases in just 77 games. He was called up to AA Richmond in early July, and continued to crush the ball with a .337/.413/.623 with 9 homers, 40 rbi, and 2 stolen bases. He even saw time at the end of the season in AAA, hitting 4 homers in just 13 games.

One of the thing that stands out to me about Belt is how excellent his plate discipline is. Even back in his college career, Belt has consistently had around a walk per strikeout, and finished 2010 with 93 walks and 99 strikeouts. I also find it interesting that he managed to steal 22 bases last year as well.

Belt has made the transition to a full time hitter, as he was previously drafted as a pitcher by the Braves in 2007. He has been playing 1B primarily, but has also played some outfield in the minors as well.

Outlook

Belt seems most likely to start 2011 in AAA for the Giants, but I could see him being in the Majors by midseason. I think he’s going to have to force the issue with his play though, as the Giants resigned Aubrey Huff to a 2 year contract, and Pat Burrell to a 1 year contract as well. Belt seems more likely to be up in 2012 though.

Prediction for 2011

.290/.380/.550, 22 HR, 95 RBI, 15 SB (AAA)

Expected ETA

Late 2011, more likely 2012 though.

More Information

Scouting Report by Paul Sporer
Project Prospect Scouting Report (8/2010)
You can find some video of his swing here.

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