Nov. 15, 2012
By Darren Richardson
Special to The Punditty Project
As a lifelong St. Louis Cardinals fan, I was very disappointed when the Redbirds couldn’t close the door on the San Francisco Giants after going up three games to one in the 2012 National League Championship Series.
But as a lifelong baseball fan, I am very pleased to see Giants catcherwin the National League MVP.
Posey, 25, made his mark on the national stage in 2010, winning NL Rookie of the Year honors and helping the Giants to the organization’s first world championship since the team moved form New York to San Francisco in 1958. The Giants had gone 56 years without a championship until Posey’s rookie season.
Posey’s ugly injury at the hands – or rather, shoulder – of the Marlins’ Scott Cousins in a gruesome 12th-inning play at the plate in late May last year not only cost the Giants in terms of competitiveness: it cost Posey the rest of the 2011 season after he underwent surgery for torn ankle ligaments.
For obvious reasons, baseball fans were greatly concerned. It was a serious injury, and in spite of all the verbalized optimism, many people no doubt questioned if Posey could fulfill the promise of his rookie season once he returned to the game.
For those old enough to remember Ray Fosse as a player and not an Oakland A's broadcaster, Posey's injuries brought to mind memories of Fosse when he was a promising catcher from yesteryear. Fosse was knocked over like a bowling pin by a high-energy barreling into home plate to score the winning run for the NL in the 12th inning of the 1970 All-Star Game.
Fosse suffered a separated shoulder, and although he played until 1977, he was never quite the same.
But Posey’s story, at least for now, has a happier ending. Part of that happy "ending" is that his career is continuing on an upward trajectory. With an outstanding regular season performance at the plate (24 HRs, 103 RBIs, .336 BA) and his deft handling of the very talented Giants pitching staff, Posey’s MVP award epitomizes the stuff of baseball legend – especially since the Giants won the World Series this year.
Posey’s recovery and subsequent excellence during the 2012 season point to the triumph of the human spirit. Literally knocked flat in May 2011, Posey easily could have become another Fosse. But the young catcher fought back with everything he had, and Giants fans supported him every step of the way. He did not disappoint.
Here’s to a long, healthy, productive career for Posey.
And here’s to a World Series championship for Redbirds catcherand the St. Louis Cardinals in 2013.
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