A Note About Buster Posey

Frankly, on the afternoon of March 21, 2009, I really wasn’t sure who Buster Posey was.

Sure, he had been the Giants’ first-round draft choice the year before and the name had filtered through every fan’s head, but as the line-ups were introduced at Phoenix Municipal Stadium for the exhibition game between the Giants and A’s, I confess to snickering a little. Buster Posey? Did they just say Wayne Housie? Ray Cosey? Post Toasties?
Just to the left of home plate, a group of fans who seemed at distance to be college age or just a little older, did more than laugh at the unfamiliar name. They serenaded him. Cries of “Bus-ter!” alternated with a Yankee Stadium-like chant of “Bus-ter Po-sey!” This was not a bunch of adoring kids performing the incantation of their favorite’s name. They were making fun of him, big-time. And they never stopped. Posey, of course, never even let on that he heard them, which would have required him to have total hearing loss.
But Buster Posey was wearing number 28 in his first major league training camp and was catching a pretty good game. He was athletic and agile and the A’s made a major league mistake trying to double-steal on him in the third inning – he nailed Jason Giambi at third base with a perfect strike that would’ve gotten Giambi from about 150 feet.
But the serenading continued. And then it happened. In the seventh inning, Posey got hold of a pitch from Russ Springer and made it disappear into the Arizona sky, high and far over the 410-foot sign in left-centerfield. And as he trotted in from third base, Buster Posey acknowledged the little group that had been deriding him all afternoon. He stared at them, tipped his helmet, and froze them into silence. It was impressive enough that I wrote it down in my scorebook.
And as the 2010 World Champion San Francisco Giants – who would be sitting at home with the rest of us if not for Buster Posey – continue to celebrate in Arlington, I keep wondering where those guys are now who were taunting him then…and what they’re thinking.

24 Comments

Absolutely right, Emerson. The Giants beat some outstanding teams. But I want to put a word in for Bruce Bochy, who has proved himself to be a Hall of Fame manager. He just outfoxed every manager he came up against, used every player in every way imaginable, and came up a champion.

Absolutely right, Emerson. The Giants beat some outstanding teams. But I want to put a word in for Bruce Bochy, who has proved himself to be a Hall of Fame manager. He just outfoxed every manager he came up against, used every player in every way imaginable, and came up a champion.

Hi Keith,
Thanks for acknowledging someone from the World Champion San Francisco Giants; was beginning to think you had some East coast bias. Like you, in the Hamilton/Molina blog; everyone has been counting them out since they hit the post season. The Fox Broadcasters are terrible; but at least they quit making snide remarks about the Giants and SF, like they were at the beginning of the playoffs. Give me Dwayne and Mike every time for calling a ball game.
Emerson

Glad I got those rookie cards while they were still cheap. :)
OK, Keith, baseball has won me over. I trotted into town, I picked a team, I got way too emotional and defensive over them on more than one occasion, and lo and behond, they won the World Series! WOW! And some wondered why I didn’t root for the Rangers. Too many reasons to list. But, now I have a question that perhaps only YOU can answer: How am I going to get through the next 5 months?! :o

I thought I heard the roar of the crowd from here. The Giants fans deserve the celebration.
This is a beautiful piece.
I remember seeing Ichiro at spring training in Peoria his first season with the Mariners. Most fans had no idea he was and people sitting around me were trying to determine if Ichiro was his first name or second name. The next year, I got a chuckle when half the kids came to the stadium wearing Ichiro jerseys.

Oh, that was wonderful! I took it as a good sign when I clicked over at the first inning break to see Keith wearing an orange tie – my Giants won the World Series! Thanks for the Buster piece; I confess to being worried when he was made the starter and Bengie traded, but it worked out so wonderfully well.

I feel sorry for any baseball fan, for any sports fan, who didn’t watch this World Series. The ratings were down, part of the self-fulfilling prophesy that no NY team in it so nobody will be interested/nobody will watch/nobody’s watching/low ratings/football won Sunday night/etc. An absolute shame.

Incredible pitching (good and bad – I will always feel sorry for Holland & Co. even as I rejoiced that my team could take advantage) plus strong defensive work, likely and unlikely batting heroes, young pitchers showing incredible strength of character. And great fans in both ballparks – I will always be proud of my fellow Giants fans for the overwhelmingly warm reception they gave Molina in Game One.

And thank goodness for our KNBR crew. No voices left amongst Duane, Mike, and Dave; Jon was hanging on, but just barely. What, seventeen weeks until pitchers and catchers report? Plenty of time to rest…

The San Francisco Giants. World Series Champions. That will never get old!!!

Emerson….I found the best way to watch my SF Giants in the Play-offs was to stream the KNBR broadcast with Kruk, Kuip, Flem and Jon (when he was available) from MLB.com and mute the FOX sound….the slight delay was worth it!….the Torture was worth it!…..I can’t wait for ST to start but at least I’ll be able to watch Keith tomorrow! Keith…love your show and your blog….please keep it up with both.

Keith,
This is off subject but I didn’t know of any other way to contact you. Please don’t get rid of your Worst Persons segment! That’s one of my favorite segments of your show. Don’t let Jon Stewart’s comments bother you, he was trying to sound ‘fair & balanced’ in order to cover his butt out of fear that his rally would be called a left wing love fest by Fox News and the AM radio blowhards….which they did anyway. Stewart is usually pretty good about smacking down the Right Wing Noise machine without fear, but not this time, this time he was afraid of what they would say about him. Don’t change anything Keith, we love you just the way you are.

Oh, that was wonderful! I took it as a good sign when I clicked over at the first inning break to see Keith wearing an orange tie – my Giants won the World Series! Thanks for the Buster piece; I confess to being worried when he was made the starter and Bengie traded, but it worked out so wonderfully well.

I feel sorry for any baseball fan, for any sports fan, who didn’t watch this World Series. The ratings were down, part of the self-fulfilling prophesy that no NY team in it so nobody will be interested/nobody will watch/nobody’s watching/low ratings/football won Sunday night/etc. An absolute shame.

Incredible pitching (good and bad – I will always feel sorry for Holland & Co. even as I rejoiced that my team could take advantage) plus strong defensive work, likely and unlikely batting heroes, young pitchers showing incredible strength of character. And great fans in both ballparks – I will always be proud of my fellow Giants fans for the overwhelmingly warm reception they gave Molina in Game One.

And thank goodness for our KNBR crew. No voices left amongst Duane, Mike, and Dave; Jon was hanging on, but just barely. What, seventeen weeks until pitchers and catchers report? Plenty of time to rest…

The San Francisco Giants. World Series Champions. That will never get old!!!

Buster Posey has that aura about him that reminds me of Jeter on the 1996 Yankees– and one could argue Posey contributed more to the Giants’ title than Jeter did also as a rookie. Talk about a winner. But the predictions that Bengie Molina having been the catcher for the Giants earlier this year would make a huge difference and really help the Rangers– those predictions didn’t pan out. The Giants have always been my NL team so I’m pinching myself today. After back to back years of misery in 2001 and 2002 I have back to back years of celebration in 2009 and 2010. Nelson Cruz– grab some pine meat.

Of all the Giants teams I’ve rooted for over the years (and have the orange-and-black scars to prove), this one became one of my favorites even before they won the West on the last day of the season. Buster is no small part of that, in particular because he strikes me as (and I hesitate to use the word about any professional athlete) humble. Certainly, he is proud of his abilities (and deservedly so), but he doesn’t display the braggadocio which so often strikes me as unappealing in someone who is, on one basic level, being paid a lot of money to play a game. I think Buster shares this with many of his teammates. (I think Matt Cain, in particular, may be one of the most gracious human beings I’ve ever seen.)

Congratulation to my beloved SF Giants.

Great stuff, Mr. Olbermann. One of the joys of being a minor league baseball spectator is the opportunity to relentlessly chant the name of a supposed up-&-comer, especially if the guy has an amusingly easily chantable name like a young Buster Posey.

General admission tickets become front row/behind the dugout tickets pretty easily in minor league venues, so that facilitates the trash-talking. This kind of behavior goes well with beer, but it’s all harmless fun.

As a Yankees fan, it’s hard to watch anyone not in my beloved pinstripes win the WS, but I love the SF pitching staff so they were my second choice this year.

After a long absence for a business trip, I flew into Pope Army Airfield, took a bus to Fort Bragg, turned in my weapon and nightvision goggles, collected my dirty equipment and rucksack, checked the condition of the barracks of my subordinates, and drove to my home just in time to catch the bottom of the 8th inning and the clinching of the Series. This deployment almost cost me a chance to see any 2010 postseason baseball, but I caught the very end.

Since the Yanks didn’t repeat, I’ll say that maybe the most awesome moment I recall from this year was seeing JP Arencibia, with his mom watching from a distance of a few meters, do this:
http://blog.prorumors.com/2010/08/rumors/video-j-p-arencibia-hits-home-run-on-first-mlb-pitch/

Keep up the fine posts and the outstanding television program, Mr. Olbermann. Adieu.

WOOO HOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

As a life-long and long-suffering Giant’s fan, I’m still pinching myself this morning to make sure that this wasn’t some kind of a dream. I pray that I don’t wake up to find out that Bobby Richardson robbed Willie McCovey of the game-winning hit…or we were swept by the A’s in 4…or Dusty Baker once again left another pitcher in too long, or took him out too soon.
Much has been said and written about the amazingly talented and “lights out” young starting rotation, but thank you for recognizing the invaluable contribution of the preternaturally calm and mature-beyond-his-years presence behind the plate. Without him, I honestly don’t think that we’d be planning for our World Series parade tomorrow—the very first since the Giants moved to San Francisco in 1958!

Awww, KEITH! I watched your show very late last night. Nice colors!!! I should have known you would not let me down. Big celebratory hugs to you. =)
I hope I have something to celebrate tonight in my 2nd favorite sport.

With this years world series over far too soon, I find myself lucky to live in Arizona. Thank GOD for Fall League baseball, otherwise the next 5 months would be excrutiating!

Here’s to another great baseball season.

My boss is one happy guy. He’s from the Bay Area and told me that he’s been waiting/praying for the SF Giants to win the World Series since he was a little boy. That smile on his face said it all. He was in such a good mood that I thought about hitting him up for a raise, but I didn’t want to push my luck! :)

Not just Posey, how about Madison Bumgarner? 21 years old, pitching in the World Series, and he throws 8 shutout innings with ice water in his veins. The Giants have one of the best farm and scouting organizations in baseball. Our post season rotation was entirely homegrown.

As a big fan of the San Jose Giants as well as the big league club, I can tell you that we have several more tricks working their way up through the system.

Maybe now the East Coast media will notice we actually know how to play baseball out here in California, and treat us as something other than filler between the latest Yankees and Red Sox updates.

Being stuck out here in AL East land is no picnic when you bleed Giants tan. or sorta red. or something. Never could figure that out even when I listened to my Giants with KDSH in Boise late at night when I was supposed to be sleeping.

I was elated, first of all because someone besides the Sox, Yankees, Phillies, or whatever were in the fight for a change. Not too thrilled about how McCarver gushed over shrub and his mama and daddy but Fox is Fox, I guess.

Second of all, elated because Bruce Bochy, one of the most unlikely guys I know of led this team of unknowns (except for Timmy, I know, I know) and has beens (apologies to Aubrey) to a place they knew not of. Not since “the Catch.”

Fine piece of work Monday evening. Made an old man very happy…

And a note to Aubrey: I guess the Os goofed again, didn’t they? Maybe with Buck the Giants and the Os can have a little contest in October.

Hey Keith,
Just want to give a “shout out” to Bruce Bouchy; he has been a genius throughout the whole season and went beyond in the post season. Absolutely fantastic in understanding his players and re-arranging the line-up etc. Hall of Fame performance.
Emerson

As a baseball fan I tip my cap to the Giants for a great year and a well-deserved World Series Championship, their first in San Francisco. Congratulations to the fans of the city by the Bay and props to The Freak and his teammates for getting it done big-time!

And as a Yankee fan I’d like to congratulate former Yankee great and current Giants pitching coach Dave Righetti for getting the ring that eluded him in The Bronx. Cheers, gentlemen!

I stopped going to Giants games a couple of years ago in a very small protest about their treatment of Barry Bonds. It’s a long, long story that I won’t bother with right now.

This season, I began following them again in August, when the pennant race was heating up. What hooked me was the fact that you could put their roster on the wall, close your eyes and point to any player, and the chances were pretty good that he would be the next game’s hero. In short, it was a real team, in every sense of the word.

When you add to that the fact that there were no prima donnas on the team, and that their clubhouse was being reported widely as the most upbeat and positive in MLB, and then add Bochy’s management genius, and the brilliant recruiting by Baer, Neukom, Magowan and the rest, you have a real shot at going all the way. Which is exactly what they did.

What a team, what a year, and what a Series!

Go Giants!

(And by the way, great story about Posey, Keith. I would have loved to have been there.)

I stopped going to Giants games a couple of years ago in a very small protest about their treatment of Barry Bonds. It’s a long, long story that I won’t bother with right now.

This season, I began following them again in August, when the pennant race was heating up. What hooked me was the fact that you could put their roster on the wall, close your eyes and point to any player, and the chances were pretty good that he would be the next game’s hero. In short, it was a real team, in every sense of the word.

When you add to that the fact that there were no prima donnas on the team, and that their clubhouse was being reported widely as the most upbeat and positive in MLB, and then add Bochy’s management genius, and the brilliant recruiting by Baer, Neukom, Magowan and the rest, you have a real shot at going all the way. Which is exactly what they did.

What a team, what a year, and what a Series!

Go Giants!

(And by the way, great story about Posey, Keith. I would have loved to have been there.)

Keith…

This is off topic, but I need you to do something…

Please fix the Pittsburgh Pirates. Get the team sold, get them some talent, get them some money, get them…HELP!

Pittsburgh – Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell, Pie Traynor, Honus Wagner, Paul Waner, Bill Mazeroski,

oh and also…Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige, Homestead Grays, Pittsburgh Crawfords.

The city has too rich a baseball history to suffer like this.
Help, Keith, help.

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