Belt hoping to return in time for possible playoffs

Giants first baseman to get concussion evaluation Thursday

Belt hoping to return in time for possible playoffs

SAN FRANCISCO -- Easing back into baseball-related activities after enduring concussion-related symptoms, Giants first baseman Brandon Belt clung to the belief Tuesday that he can appear in enough games during the regular season's final week to participate in the postseason should San Francisco advance that far.

Belt plans to leave Wednesday for a Thursday appointment with Dr. Michael Collins, a Pittsburgh-based expert on sports-related concussions. Should Collins clear Belt for increased activity, the 26-year-old might be able to resume taking pregame batting practice with the team as soon as Friday.

Belt expressed optimism that he can quickly progress into game shape and merit inclusion on the postseason roster, if the Giants are fortunate enough to earn the opportunity to form one.

"I don't know how realistic that is," said Belt, who last appeared for the Giants on Aug. 6. "But that's what I'm hoping for."

Giants manager Bruce Bochy spoke with more caution, observing that he couldn't estimate how much Belt can play until he returns from his evaluation with Collins and begins taking live batting practice, likely off some of the pitchers who were September callups.

Belt intensified his activity Tuesday by taking 25 ground balls and 50 swings, hitting off a tee and soft-tossed flips.

"It feels good," said Belt, who's hitting .237 with 11 home runs and 24 RBIs in 51 games. "I'm tired of doing nothing. It's nice to do something."

Chris Haft is a reporter for Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.