According to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News, the San Francisco Giants have decided to add Brandon Belt onto the 2011 Opening Day roster and start him at first base against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday night.

To be honest, this is a shock to everyone and anyone who has been involved in Giants baseball through the last several years.

All signs were pointing to Belt being called up by the May at the earliest and most definitely by June or July; but obviously the Giants see that this young prospect can make this team that much better.

If the Giants had held out on calling up Belt until May, Belt would have had an extra year with the Giants before free agency, something the Giants are very serious about with all their young players.

Instead, the Giants chose the alternate route and have made Belt their first baseman.

The move will send Aubrey Huff into right field.

The downside to this madness is that backup first baseman Travis Ishikawa will now be placed on waivers. Reports are he said his goodbyes to the team this afternoon.

What may have had the biggest effect on the Belt call-up was the injury to right-fielder Cody Ross.

The Giants had several options in this case, whether it was Huff in right field, or even Mark DeRosa or Nate Schierholtz, but they obviously felt Belt’s time was now.

How could you blame them for calling up Belt?

He is ready for big leagues.

It was the manner in which the Giants went about calling up their top offensive prospect that has some people scratching their heads.

I can only expect that the Giants are certain that Belt can and will live up to the expectations right now.

With the Giants having success seasoning several of their home-grown players and making them into bonified major league players in the past, it is only expected that the Giants made the right move in calling up Belt.

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