The first week of baseball is in the books and the SF Giants observed a very encouraging sign from their longtime catcher, Buster Posey, who opted out of the 2020 season to keep his family safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. In his first official at-bat since the end of the 2019 season, the 34-year old worked a 2-0 count against Seattle Mariners lefty Marco Gonzales before driving a ball well over the left-field wall.
SF Giants Highlight: Buster Posey‘s deep drive to left field
After undergoing hip surgery to address a hip impingement and repair a torn labrum at the end of 2018, Posey did not look like the same hitter in 2019. In 445 plate appearances, the right-handed bat slashed a career-worst .257/.320/.368 (83 OPS+) with just seven home runs and 38 RBI while generating just 0.8 WAR.
In recent seasons, Posey had not been able to drive the ball, especially to left field and the hip injury was likely a major factor. With that being said, Posey is now 2.5 seasons removed from major surgery. Has enough time passed that Posey’s hips have recovered from major surgery? That remains to be seen but the early returns are certainly favorable.
Throughout the Cactus League, Posey has had some nice swings, but we did not see him pull the ball all that often. He has never been a pull hitter throughout his career, consistently spraying the ball all over the field in his prime. However, in recent years, it seemed like Posey was just not able to pull the ball with any force. He would poke inside pitches to right field with an inside-out swing.
The swing that we saw on Thursday was a vintage swing from the 12-year veteran. Of course, one home run was not enough for Posey. He followed that up with another home run on Friday night as well.
The SF Giants got a .593 OPS from the catcher position in 2020, and they are looking to see much more production from that position in 2021 with the return of Buster Posey and the addition of Curt Casali. It very early in the season, but the SF Giants have got to like what they are seeing so far from Posey.