Top Giants prospect Bart out with broken hand

Catcher expected to miss 4-6 weeks after being hit by pitch

April 16th, 2019

WASHINGTON -- Joey Bart, the Giants' top prospect and the No. 22 prospect in baseball, is expected to miss “probably” four to six weeks after suffering a fracture in his left hand when he was hit by a pitch while playing for Class A Advanced San Jose on Monday night, manager Bruce Bochy said.

“I’m saying that with doubt,” Bochy said of the potential timeline for return. “After we re-evaluate him, it could be sooner, it could be a little longer.”

Bart will wear a cast for the next couple weeks to protect a broken second metacarpal bone in his catching hand before being re-evaluated, Bochy said.

The 22-year-old Georgia Tech product and No. 2 overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft had been batting .270 in the California League, with five of his 10 hits going for extra bases while collecting eight RBIs.

Despite the setback, Bochy didn’t necessarily rule out Bart progressing through San Francisco's system on an accelerated path to the point of being a September callup.

“There’s a lot of baseball left,” Bochy said. “I mean, you’re looking at probably around June, in that area, the start of June where he’ll be playing. There’s a lot of baseball left to be played.”

Austin to return in DC?

Bochy also said he’s hopeful Tyler Austin will be able to start Thursday afternoon’s series finale in the outfield after he avoided the injured list.

Austin had been sidelined over the weekend after reporting discomfort in his right elbow Friday.