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Buster Posey not just a baseball star, but a role model

Editorial

San Francisco Giants' star catcher Buster Posey reacts with his family -- wife, Kristen; son, Lee, and daughter, Addison -- during a live nationally televised announcement naming him the NL MVP Thursday at the Transitional Learning Center in Leesburg. (Nov. 15, 2012)

San Francisco Giants' star catcher Buster Posey reacts with his family -- wife, Kristen; son, Lee, and daughter, Addison -- during a live nationally televised announcement naming him the NL MVP Thursday at the Transitional Learning Center in Leesburg. (Nov. 15, 2012)

As Thanksgiving season approaches, Buster Posey has much for which to be thankful.

Just for starters, when he goes to work every day he goes to the ballpark, where he is handsomely paid to play a game that he has loved since he was old enough to slip on a baseball glove and find someone who would play catch with him.

He is blessed to be born into a loving family that raised him to be a good, humble person. He fell in love and married his high school sweetheart, Kristen, and they have two beautiful, healthy children.

Part of the famous Lee County trio that includes nationally-known singers Luke Bryan and Phillip Phillips, Posey is at the top of his game.

Thursday night, he was awarded the National League’s Most Valuable Player Award for his play with the San Francisco Giants. It’s considered the top individual award a player can receive in Major League Baseball.

Posey has been with the Giants for three seasons, but has played the equivalent of just two seasons because of an injury his second season and a late call-up from the minors in his rookie year. During that time, he has amassed more awards than most players receive in careers that stretch two decades.

MVP. Rookie of the Year. NL batting champion. Silver Slugger. All Star. Comeback Player of the Year. Two World Series titles.

Sure, those World Series titles involve a little good fortune by being on the right team at the right time, but it could be argued that the Giants may not have won either of those titles without Posey’s significant contributions. For a player young in years, he has quickly become a mature leader on the field.

The statistics are tremendous, but Posey’s value to San Francisco goes beyond numbers. He epitomizes the quiet leader who leads by example, who gives credit first to his teammates. even has he worked his way back from what was a career-threatening injury, he gave credit to those who helped him on that no doubt painful journey.

He’s become quite recognizable nationally in his short career by playing on the national stage that the World Series provides. San Francisco fans have adopted him. Southwest Georgians have always been his biggest supporters, but fans throughout the country are joining in.

We are thankful for the attention that Posey is getting. The more youngsters who watch him and want to wear that No. 28 jersey, the better. Just as he is one of the most gifted baseball players on the planet, he’s also one of the best role models.

Parents everywhere would be thankful if their youngsters grew up to be like Buster — with or without the catcher’s mitt.

— The Albany Herald Editorial Board