Buster Posey, catcher for the San Francisco Giants, is just 28 years old. Not only does he already have three World Series rings, but also he was the MLB Rookie of the Year in 2009 and National League MVP in 2012. Because of his accomplishments, Posey was named the official ambassador of Topps 2015 Series Two MLB Trading Cards Set.
Buster collected baseball cards with his siblings when he was younger, so he was pretty excited to receive this honor. “I think [collecting] is a neat way to learn about baseball and get excited about certain players,” he said. Posey caught Giants rookie pitcher Chris Heston’s no-hitter on June 9against the New York Mets. The following day, Posey visited the Topps office in New York City, and Kid Reporter Riley Neubauer had a chance to ask him some questions.
I read that your sister plays softball. When you were growing up, did you play softball and baseball with her?
Of course. She played baseball until she was about 12. She is a great athlete and was right in the middle of it with all of us.
Do you get to pick your own catcher’s gear?
Yes, I can give suggestions. But most times Under Armour will send me their current model for the year.
Did you change your gear after you broke a bone in your leg during that collision at home plate in 2011?
No, there was nothing really to change.
What do you say to pitchers when you talk to them on the mound during a game?
It depends on the pitcher. A lot of times I try to encourage them. Each pitcher has a different personality, so I try to approach each pitcher differently.
When you meet the coach on the mound, do you ever influence the decision to take a pitcher out of the game?
Not so much on the mound. But sometimes in the dugout, the coach will ask me how the pitcher is doing and sometimes he will make his decision based on the feedback I give him.
You are such a successful hitter, if you had to give one piece of advice to kids about hitting what would that be?
See the ball. It is as simple as that. You can’t hit unless you see the ball. Sometimes we get too caught up in mechanics, and I will do that too, but to me the most important part of hitting is seeing the ball. Then, get the barrel on the ball. You can have perfect mechanics, but if you don’t really focus on seeing the baseball and making sure you make consistent contact, then all the other stuff goes out the window.
I have read that pitchers enjoy pitching to you. Do you have any idea of why that is?
Hopefully I give them confidence. I feel like a catcher’s job is to make the pitcher feel confident on the mound.
If you could break one MLB record, what would it be?
Ultimately it is about winning games and winning championships. When you look back on someone’s career, that is what you remember — how many games he was able to win. I would like to be the catcher who has won the most championships.
Photos: Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images (action), Riley Neubauer (with Kid Reporter)