Buster Posey Part Deux
If you’ll remember, back in early December I made the case for uber-prospect Buster Posey to start the season in the Majors, catching a majority of games with a temporary veteran stopgap spelling him once or twice per week. Since then, my foolproof house of cards strategy has come crashing down with the signing of Bengie Molina.
Upon Molina’s signing, I became resigned to the fact that Posey would spend a majority of the season in Fresno refining his craft and playing every day. The big news of the day though is that Buster may actually make the big team over backup Eli Whiteside; only not as a catcher.
According to Bruce Bochy, he’ll be taking grounders at first base while making the occasional start behind the plate. From there, the good news keeps on rolling, as Bochy admitted that last season he “overworked” Molina, and that the 120 starts he made in 2009 were “too many.” If Posey makes the roster as a first-baseman and spells Bengie for say, 40% of games, we’re a better team. If Posey plays at first when a lefty is on the mound, then we’re a better team. If Posey plays catcher on the days he’s not playing first, we’re a better team. I guess what I’m trying to say is that it’s absolutely essential to the success of this team in 2009 for Buster Posey to make the 25-man roster out of camp and to play on at least a semi-consistent basis.
No matter what way you swing it, Buster Posey is a better baseball player than Bengie Molina. Hell, if he played every day he’d probably be our second-best hitter, probably followed by John Bowker, who would also play on a regular basis in my fantasy world (a discussion for another post perhaps?). Given the circumstances, the plan to have Buster take grounders as an infielder is really the best possible scenario. Of course in a perfect world things would be different, but that’s just not the world we live in.
Harsh realities of the universe being the way they are, Bengie Molina is the Opening Day catcher. This is something I’ve come to terms with. So by having Buster Posey, a guy who played all over the place in college, learn first-base, our offense is better by default. It’s a step in the right direction in terms of competent roster management, even if it isn’t perfect.