Buster Posey is the best catcher in the major leagues.
Apart from outfielder Mike Trout and pitcher Clayton Kershaw, no other position in baseball has such a clear-cut best player. The underappreciated Posey is nearly perfect playing the game’s most demanding position. Consistent and remarkably durable, the 6’1”, 215-pound backstop hits for both average and power. He has taken the title of best defensive catcher in baseball from Yadier Molina of the St. Louis Cardinals. Posey is the best in the game in three areas of catching defense. First, he is masterful at pitch framing [getting the umpire to call a pitch a strike] “stealing” strikes better than any catcher in the big leagues. Next, he allowed only two passed balls out of 414 pitches in the dirt last season, giving him the best block rate [95 percent] in the game. Lastly, Posey led all players – not just catchers – in bunt defense last season. A former shortstop, he is used to throwing on the run, getting to the ball quickly and making accurate throws. As a result, Posey was awarded his first Gold Glove in 2016.
Is there anything Buster Posey cannot do? He played four sports at Lee County High School, graduating fourth in a class of 302 while accumulating a 3.94 GPA. Playing pitcher and shortstop, he set school records for batting average and RBI while leading Lee County to the Georgia AAAA state championship game, where the Trojans fell to Jason Heyward and Henry County High. In his senior year, Posey went 12-0 in 13 starts with a 1.06 ERA and 108 strikeouts. After the season, he was named Georgia Player of the Year and was named both EA Sports and Baseball America All-America. Posey was selected in the 50th round of the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft by the Los Angeles Dodgers, but instead accepted a baseball scholarship to Florida State University.
Posey’s college career reads like a fairytale. As a freshman at Florida State, he started all 65 games at shortstop and was named Louisville Slugger Freshman All American. He moved to catcher as a sophomore and finished second in voting for the Johnny Bench Award as the best catcher in college baseball. After hitting .463 with 26 home runs and 93 RBI as a junior, Posey won the Johnny Bench Award, was named Collegiate Baseball Player of the Year, and won the Dick Howser Trophy as college baseball’s top player. He enjoyed an especially good day on May 12, 2008, when he hit a grand slam and played all nine fielding positions in a 10-0 win over Savannah State University. As a pitcher that day, Posey struck out both batters he faced. Following his junior season, Posey won the Golden Spikes Award, the Heisman Trophy of baseball.
In the summer of 2006, Posey started at shortstop and helped the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox win the Cape Cod Baseball League championship. The following year, the Sox successfully defended their CCBL title with Posey playing catcher.
Born in Leesburg, Georgia, March 27, 1987, Gerald Dempster Posey III is the eldest of “Buster” and Traci’s four children. He grew up playing football, soccer and basketball, but baseball was always his best sport. Posey left Leesburg – birthplace of hall of fame running back Marion Motley and country music artist Luke Bryan – for Florida State in 2005, but still lives in Georgia during the offseason.
The San Francisco Giants selected Buster Posey with the fifth overall pick of the 2008 MLB Draft. After signing for the largest bonus in Giants history, he was assigned to San Jose — the club’s Class-A affiliate in the California League. Considered the second-best prospect in the Giants organization [behind pitcher Madison Bumgarner], Posey was promoted to the Triple-A Fresno Grizzlies of the Pacific Coast League, where he batted .321 and collected 42 hits in 35 games. He was called up to the big league club for the final weeks of the 2009 season before returning to Fresno for the start of the 2010 campaign. After batting .349 with 60 hits in 47 games, the Giants called him up to the major leagues at the end of May. When San Francisco traded Bengie Molina to the Texas Rangers one month later, Posey became the team’s starting catcher.
Posey was named NL Rookie of the Year in 2010. In the postseason, he caught every inning of the playoffs and became the first rookie in NLDS history to collect four hits in one game. He capped off a dream season when the Giants beat Texas to win the 2010 World Series. Posey missed most of 2011 after being severely injured in a collision at home plate, when Scott Cousins maliciously and intentionally bowled Posey over while attempting to score. Posey underwent season-ending surgery to repair a broken fibula and three torn ankle ligaments suffered during the play, which led to a new rule designed to limit home plate collisions. Rule 7.13 – the Buster Posey Rule – states “a runner attempting to score may not deviate from his direct pathway to the plate in order to initiate contact with the catcher [or other player covering home plate].”
Buster returned in 2012 to have his finest major league season while leading the Giants to their second world title of the decade. In 2014, he had the second five-hit game of his career — more than any catcher in Giants history – and led San Francisco to their third World Series title in five years. The following year, he clouted his 100th career homer, and in September 2016 collected the 1,000thhit of his career, a solo home run off of Rockies’ right hander German Marquez.
Posey has played in four All-Star games, more than any catcher in Giants history. He was named NL MVP in 2012, a season in which he was also named Comeback Player of the Year. Posey has led San Francisco to three World Series titles and was the starting catcher for the gold medal-winning U.S. team in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. Mr. Posey won the Hank Aaron Award as the top hitter in the NL in 2012 after amassing a .336 batting average and a slugging percentage of .549. On November 15, 2015, Posey was named winner of the Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Award, given to the best defensive catcher in baseball. The next day, he earned his third career Silver Slugger Award as the best-hitting catcher in the league.
On this date in 2008, Gerald Dempster Posey was named Baseball America College Player of the Year. He succeeded David Price, who won the honor while pitching for Vanderbilt in 2007. The 2009 winner was San Diego State right hander Stephen Strasburg. On this date in 2010, Posey joined the Giants big league club for good, going three for four with three RBI against the Arizona Diamondbacks.