© Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
SAN FRANCISCO – The San Francisco Giants made a surprising move Tuesday afternoon with a lineup that featured a catcher playing left field. Stephen Vogt is set to start in left field for the Giants Tuesday night against the Atlanta Braves.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy wanted to give struggling Mac Williamson a break from left field and ultimately went with Vogt, who’s swinging a hot bat.
“You know the splits are somewhat, not somewhat, they’re quite a bit significant here”, Bochy said. “Just trying to get another bat in there, going to give Mac a little break. I wanted to get another left-handed bat in there, I know I’ve got another one on the bench with Pablo, so Vogt, he played one game there in Sacramento.”
Vogt, as surprising as it may be, is no stranger to playing the outfield. In his career, Vogt has played 21 games in the outfield, splitting time between left and right field.
“He got some work out there yesterday and today, but it’s been a while in the major leagues, I think he goes back to 2014 since he’s been out there, but we’re just hoping for a quality start from him.”
We checked when the last time Vogt played outfield was and turns out it was as recently as 2017 with the A’s (one game).
Brandon Belt would have been an option to play left field but is currently nursing a bad knee. Belt’s progress ultimately played a part in the decision to start Vogt in left.
“Yeah, that did come into play. He’s doing a lot better, but if I were to put him out there and that thing would have flared up, then that would have been shame on us with him dealing with that. So that’s the biggest reason why he didn’t go to left field.”
With Belt dealing with a bad knee, there may be a chance that he does not return to the outfield for the remainder of the season. Bochy and the Giants will want to make sure his knee calms down before putting him back in the lineup.
“He’s doing a lot better, but until he gets through this, he may not this year, it may flare up occasionally and keep him from going back out to left field.”
Tuesday night the Giants take on Julio Teheran and the Braves in the second game of a three-game series. The Giants will send Shaun Anderson to the mound, who makes his second career start.