Career San Francisco Giant and baseball super-star Buster Posey Thursday announced his retirement from baseball. With his wife Kristen beside him and multiple high ranking Giants front office members flanking him the three-time World Series Champion noted physical toll and a want to spend more time with his family as leading factors for calling it a career.
What a career it was.
Posey retires as the greatest back-stop to dawn a mask in Giant’s history, with a case as having one of the greatest primes in the games history. His 12-year career begin in 2009 with a meager 17 at bats but struck like lighting in 2010 when he slashed .302/.357/.505 with a .862 OPS, 18 homeruns and 67 RBIs. Along the way he picked up the NL Rookie of the Year award and his first World Series titles.
Lighting would strike twice more for the young star but not before a major roadblock.
Early during the 2011 season in the 12th inning against the then named Florida Marlins, Posey and Scott Cousins were involved in a collision at the plate. Cousins’ was safe and clearly meant no harm through his actions. With the ball trickling away and the final score reading “7-6” the 24-yearold catcher lay in the dirt withering in pain. The collision would become famous as it cost the catcher the rest of 2011 and effectively brought about an end to the allowance of trucking a catcher. A rule now know as “The Posey Rule”.
Many questioned if Posey would ever be the same.
A 2012 NL All-Star bid and awards that included NL Comeback Player of the Year, Willie McCovey, Hank Aaron, Silver Slugger and NL MVP would line his trophy case at the close of the 2012 season to prove that he was very much the same. To cap off a regular season in which he hit .336 for the NL batting title with 24 big ones and more RBIs (103) than strikeouts (96) the Giants’ won their second World Series title with Posey in tow. This time in dominant fashion – a 4-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers.
Following an equally as impressive 2013, the 2014 rendition of the star and his team went on to capture a third title in five years. Posey joined Pete Rose with the ring as the only other player in MLB history to win ROTY, MVP and three rings. The career .302 hitter with seven All-Star appearances, four Silver slugger awards, MVP, two time Wilson Defensive Player of the Year and one time Gold Glove winner hangs them up having accomplished everything one could want on a diamond.
Posey wouldn’t be done with awards yet.
He makes the short list of catchers to win an MVP, make at least five All-Star games and win a title. He is top 40 in hits, doubles, homeruns, RBIs and runs for his position while sitting 14th in JWAR, 16th in WAR without framing and 8th in WAR with framing. Posey caught three no-hitters – one of which was a perfect game – which is good for tied third-most in league history. In Posey fashion he brought things to a fitting end by helping lead the Giants to a NL West title. As the book closed on the 2021 season, Posey become the only catcher in MLB history to eclipse the .300 mark in their final season.
His off the field accomplishments might be the only rival to his on the field success.
In 2016 the Posey family launched the “BP28” foundation to, “change the outcomes for children with pediatric cancer…”. To date the pair has helped raise north of $5 million for research, partnered with the V Foundation and North Carolina and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital, funded numerous grants, research centers and groups as well as hosted multiple fundraising events in the fight against pediatric cancer. To get a full feel for the former Giants’ work in the community check out BP28’s main site.
While his retirement spells sadness among the baseball community for what he brought to the field, his astounding work off the field and what he has meant to fans one cannot help but wish the future HOFer the best in post-baseball life.
One cannot help but to also wonder, will there ever be another Posey.