Recently, Posey expressed a strain and tightness in his neck, lengthening the time without him for San Francisco Giants pitchers.
The San Francisco Giants will be without Buster Posey for a little bit. With this, backups get their chance at the lime light, but not without putting in their fair share of extra work. Samardzija is hopeful that Posey’s injury keeps him out of the game for a while. No, not because he hates the All-Star catcher, but because he’s rooting for Posey and Crawford to play deep into the World Baseball Classic.
Veteran catcher, Nick Hundley, is serving as Posey’s understudy. Hundley, a San Francisco newcomer, signed a one-year deal in January and has since caught with Bumgarner 3 times, Matt Cain twice, and Matt Moore twice. He made his debut with Cueto and finished his first round with the starting lineup on Monday night playing the Texas Rangers.
Samardzija’s comments on Hundley’s performance with him on Monday night included,
"“It’s always good to work out those kinks. It’s good to have him back there so he can know what I shake to, what we’re on the same page with, getting a better idea of what we throw.”"
Posey’s neck injuries have held him back and even had a torpedo effect on his play in the past. In the second half of 2016, he dealt with the neck injury on top of several other unspecified injuries. After last summers All-Star break, Posey only hit 3 home runs and averaged a .383 slugging percentage in 66 games.
Aside from Posey’s injuries, the team seems to be adjusting well to his absence. Bumgarner commented that they “…seem to be catching on to each other relatively easy. We’ve done quite a bit of talking. It’s easier with somebody who’s been around, seen the league, and he’s also seen quite a bit of me. It just speeds up the learning curve.”
Overall the Giants are looking at Posey’s absence, both from the stiff neck and his presence at the World Baseball Classic, in a positive light. Getting Hundley assimilated to new pitchers has become a blessing in disguise even though the stiff neck is a curse for Posey.