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Thank You Buster

It is always tough to write about and reflect on the career of one of your favorite players of all-time, but I am going to try to do my best to honor a legend. Buster Posey is officially retiring from baseball after his amazing 2021 season. Now I could talk about all the stats through his career and tell you why he was the best catcher of his generation, and I will talk a little bit about it, but Posey’s career means so much more to those in San Francisco than all his accolades. This is my thank you to Gerald Dempsey “Buster” Posey III.

I remember going to my very first Giants game as an 8 year old kid in 2008, it was Marine animal day and I was so excited to go to my first game. I don’t remember the actual game, but this was the start for my love for baseball. My cousin who really got me into baseball was talking about the draft that year and how it was looking like a catcher out of Florida could be the best prospect in the draft. Fast forward a couple years and we find ourselves in May of 2010, Buster Posey gets called up and it is supposed to be for good this time after appearing in 7 games as a September call up in 2009. This was the real start to Posey’s illustrious career. Posey won Rookie of the Year in 2010 along with leading the Giants to their first World Series in the San Francisco era and the first for the franchise since 1954. Posey lost most of the 2011 season due to a brutal injury that many fans of baseball are aware of that led to the implementation of the “Buster Posey Rule”. Then came 2012. Oh boy 2012, this season means more to me as a Giants fan than just about anything. Here is a list of things Buster Posey did in that 2012 season: All-Star appearance, won the NL batting title, won NL MVP, won the Hank Aaron Award, won a Silver Slugger, won NL Comeback Player of the Year, won the Willie Mac Award, caught Matt Cain’s perfect game, won a World Series ring. Posey compiled 10.1 fWAR during the 2012 season. 10.1. That is an absurd number, and to do it a year after a major injury at only 25 years old is astounding. I don’t want to focus too much more on the numeric aspects of his career so I will push his career numbers and accolades onto you here: Rookie of the Year, 7x All-Star, 3x World Series Champion, 4x Silver Slugger (could and should be 5 after this season’s is announced), 2x Comeback Player of the Year, Hank Aaron Award, Willie Mac Award, Gold Glove, Batting Title, caught 2 No Hitters and 1 Perfect Game. Posey has done just about everything you can hope to accomplish in a career, he has nothing left to prove.

Buster Posey is one of my all-time favorite players and I really don’t know what baseball is without him. He was the last player that was a part of the 2010 team that won that first World Series. He really is closing the book on that era of Giants history, and that’s okay, not all good things can last forever. In over 1300 career games, I have watched so many of them, and watching his 2021 season now knowing it was his last feels even more special. I grew up getting to watch the best catcher for my favorite team nearly every game. He broke into the big leagues when I was a 9 year old 4th grader learning what things like batting average and slugging percentage were. Now I am 22 years old and just finished college, I use things like OPS+ and Barrel% frequently and I know that if one thing was there for me through all those years of growing up and learning, it was baseball and Buster Posey behind the dish. Buster now gets to spend time with his wife Kristen and their family. He has 4 children, a set of twins with Lee and Addison who are now 11, and another set of twins that he and Kristen adopted in 2020, Ada and Livvi. Ada and Livvi were a huge reason Posey chose to opt out of the 2020 season, as Kristen and him adopted them as premature born twins in the midst of a pandemic. Buster has always been a family-oriented man, and now he gets to be a full time dad, and something tells me he will be even better at that than he was at baseball, which is saying something. Buster and Kristen also have the BP28 foundation, a foundation to help raise awareness and funds for pediatric cancer. Launched in spring of 2016, their foundation has raised over $5.5 million for pediatric cancer, which is just astounding. It’s been awesome to see the success that this organization has had over the last few years and now there is some more free time for Buster especially to focus on these awesome efforts.

The impact that Buster had on so many people in the Bay Area and outside of it is immeasurable. He never wanted any of this attention that he got, but he was more than deserving of all of it. I can’t wait to see 28 retired and up around Oracle park. I can’t wait to see the Buster Posey statue up outside the stadium. Most of all, I can’t wait to see the day he is inducted into the Hall of Fame as the best catcher of his generation. Thank you Buster, for everything you did for me, everything you did for the Bay, everything you did for the game of baseball. Your presence will be missed both on and off the field, but we could not be more proud of all that you have accomplished. Giants fans everywhere know this is a bittersweet day, but I’m sure several years down the road, the great game of baseball will pull you back in. Thank you Buster. #Thank28

Diego Franco-Carreno

@djfc22 on Twitter. Student at Boise State University c/o 2021. Math and baseball.

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