MLB fans didn’t know it until after the season ended, but the 2021 campaign was the final year of Buster Posey’s iconic career.
The San Francisco Giants legend went out with a bang, posting some of his best offensive numbers in years.
On Thursday, he earned one of the final accolades of his career, as he was awarded Silver Slugger honors for the fifth time.
Buster Posey has been named the National League’s Louisville Silver Slugger Award winner at catcher. pic.twitter.com/F576qc0BYp
— SFGiants (@SFGiants) November 11, 2021
The 34-year-old certainly has a lot to be proud of in the context of his 2021 season and 12-year career.
A Deserving Silver Slugger Winner
Posey’s 2021 campaign was a microcosm of his entire career.
Over 113 games, the veteran slashed .304/.390/.499.
He registered an OPS of 140 — the third-best mark of his career — which was aided by his 18 home runs and 23 doubles.
Career home run No. 1️⃣5️⃣0️⃣ for Buster Posey 👏👏👏
This three-run shot puts the Giants up 5-2 over the Dodgers.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) May 29, 2021
Posey finished the year with an offensive bWAR of 4.1, which is a really impressive number considering the fact that he only played in about 70 percent of the Giants’ regular-season games.
The seven-time All-Star rose the occasion down the stretch of the regular season.
With San Francisco doing its very best to fend off the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West over the final couple of weeks of the campaign, Posey made sure to deliver
He batted .368 with a .922 OPS over his final 12 games.
It seems pretty safe to say that the Giants wouldn’t have won the NL West without Posey’s contributions — not just down the stretch, but all season long.
Posey Checked Every Box Possible During His 12-Year Career
Few players have accomplished as much as Posey did throughout his playing days.
It took the former first-round pick just 12 seasons to drastically change the perception of the Giants organization.
He helped the team win three titles, and he was a massive part of all of them.
They came in 2010, 2012, and 2014.
Championships ultimately matter more than anything else, but individually, Posey racked up a long list of accomplishments throughout his career.
He earned each of the following:
- Seven All-Star selections
- Five Silver Slugger awards
- Gold Glove award
- MVP award
- Battle title
- Rookie of the Year award
Accolades aside, his numbers speak for themselves.
He maintained a career batting average of .302, OPS of .831, and OPS+ of 129.
Let’s not forget about the impact he made behind the plate, either.
He’s widely regarded as one of the best defensive catchers of this generation.
Next Stop: Cooperstown
Some fans seem to think that Posey isn’t a lock to be elected to the Hall of Fame, but candidly, that’s a hard take to get behind.
Not only does Posey belong in Cooperstown — he should get in on the first ballot.
Buster Posey is a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
One of the greatest players to suit up for the San Francisco Giants. Deserves to have his number 28 retired and a statue outside of Oracle Park.
— Carlos Murillo (@LosMurillo126) November 3, 2021
Sure, his career wasn’t very long, and yes, some of his counting stats are lower than those of the average Hall of Famer as a result of his career length.
But Posey accomplished more in 12 seasons than many players do in 20.
He shouldn’t be punished for going out on his own terms.
We’ll have to wait a few years to see what happens, but it certainly seems like the three-time champ will find himself in Cooperstown in the near future.