Trading Joey Bart might be the best option for the San Francisco Giants as the 2021 MLB Trade Deadline approaches. The deadline is a meager ten days away, scheduled for July 30th. Baseball is a game of highs and lows. Just one year ago, Giants fans were dismayed when it was announced that Joey Bart had been optioned back to the minor leagues after Spring Training. Fans had already been served the reality that Buster Posey elected to sit out the entirety of the season due to concerns related to recently adopted twins and the Covid-19 virus. So, no Bart, no Posey, what the heck?
Joey Bart did, in fact, get the call later into the shortened season. On August 20th, the second overall pick in the 2018 draft was set to debut as a Giant. Detroit Tigers starting pitcher and 2018 number one overall pick, Casey Mize, had just made his MLB debut the previous day vs. the Chicago White Sox.
All Hail Joey Bart
Joey Bart stepped onto the big league stage, sharing time with another Giants catcher in Chadwick Tromp. Unfortunately, Joey Bart did not impress. He struggled, and it is difficult as a fan to have such high expectations of a uniquely regarded prospect because expectations don’t always translate to exactly what you saw in your crystal ball.
After fans were able to watch Joey Bart struggle throughout the entirety of the 2020 season. The expectations of Bart being the next Buster Posey transformed into the realization that Joey Bart was a young kid who played 22 games at the Double-A level before everyone expected him to be the new Buster Posey.
Now Back to the Present
When the 2021 MLB season began, Buster Posey was back in the squat for the Giants, and newly acquired veteran Curt Casali had been signed as the backup. Joey Bart was expected to get some quality reps in at the upper levels of the minor leagues to continue and develop his skills. Posey would finish the year off, and Bart would be ready to take control in 2022.
No one mentioned that to Buster Posey, however. Posey has turned back time and is flourishing after taking the year off. Batting .330 and already surpassing his accumulative home run totals from 2018 and 2019, he has made hitting the ball the other way appear as a decision rather than a skill.
The uptick in offensive production has been a pleasant surprise to fans and members of the Giants organization. However, the writing on the wall that Joey Barts’s job as the Giants’ catcher was simply a year away has vanished. Posey means a lot to San Francisco. Taking this and his remarkable rejuvenation in on-field performance into consideration, a big red stop signed has been deposited on the corner of Joey and Bart.
The Giants now have a decision to make. Does Buster Posey stay after the conclusion of the 2021 season? This leaves the door open for the Joey Bart era to take over. Or, Do the Giants extend Posey. Rewarding him for his transcendence in his older years as an athlete.
The Giants are in no Hurry
The fact that Buster Posey is awesome again has been well-established. So, no more mention of that. Although Posey is playing at an elite level as a catcher once again, that doesn’t change the fact that he is in the latter part of his career. Keeping Bart around to develop further would only help his case to become a better big league product in the future. The issue with that is, catchers arent outfielders, and you can’t start three of them.
Although, Joey Bart is the #17 overall prospect according to MLB.com. He is one of three promising catchers in the Giants minor league system. Bart is the Giants second-highest ranked prospect and the only Giants catcher in MLB’s top-100. However, the Giants also have Patrick Bailey. The switch-hitting North Carolina State product was drafted 13th overall in the 2020 MLB draft by San Francisco. Bailey isn’t alone, however. Ricardo Genoves, an international signing out of Venezuela in 2015, has begun taking shape. He started the year in Low-A San Jose. After 38 games, Genoves played to the tune of a .338 batting average and an OPS of .992.
With Joey Bart, the highly regarded prospect in Patrick Bailey, and the ever-improving Ricardo Genoves, The Giants will have to make some decisions.
Trading Joey Bart Makes Sense.
The philosophy of the Giants is this, work the count, take walks, and only swing at pitches you can drive. That’s why Farhan Zaidi so sought after players like Mike Tauchman and Tommy La Stella. In 2020, as a big leaguer, Joey Bart took three walks and struck out 41 times. That is a glaring problem. However, it’s fair to say he wasn’t ready for that level of competition.
In 2021, as a member of the Sacramento Rivercats, Joey Bart has taken 11 walks and struck out 50 times. This demonstrates that Bart hasn’t been able to correct this problem. The offensive philosophy employed by the Giants that has generated so much success is the opposite of what Joey Bart has shown to be as an offensive player.
Buster Posey has proven he still has years left in the tank. The Giants have three plus-catchers in their farm system. And, the strikeout to walk ratio for Bart speaks for itself. If the Giants weren’t exceeding expectations in extraordinary proportions, then they wouldn’t appear to be buyers at the deadline. The fact is that Joey Bart figures to be an asset to a big-league team, but not something the Giants need right now.
For the Giants to get the most bang for their buck, trading Joey Bart now makes the most sense. His trade value as a minor leaguer will not be higher than it is at this very moment.
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