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Giants sign MVP Buster Posey to $167 million contract

Mar 29, 2013, 3:06 PM EDT

Romo Posey Getty Getty Images

Justin Verlander isn’t the only former MVP getting paid today, as Andrew Baggarly of reports that the Giants and reigning NL MVP Buster Posey have agreed to a nine-year contract.

Posey was set to make $8 million this season, but this new contract wipes that away and will pay him $167 million from 2013-2021. In doing so the Giants have bought out Posey’s three remaining seasons of arbitration eligibility (2014-2016) and his first five seasons of free agency (2017-2021), and there’s also an option for 2022.

Posey will be 35 years old in 2022, so this basically makes him a Giant for life. Not bad for a guy who was facing major questions this time last year as he came back from a broken ankle that ended his 2011 season. Posey’s deal is the second-highest in baseball history for a catcher, trailing only Joe Mauer‘s eight-year, $184 million contract with the Twins that was signed in March of 2010. Posey now, like Mauer then, is coming off an MVP-winning season that included a batting title, although he was further from free agency than Mauer then.

Here’s the full contract breakdown:

Bonus: $7 million
2013: $8 million
2014: $12.5 million
2015: $16.5 million
2016: $20 million
2017: $21.4 million
2018: $21.4 million
2019: $21.4 million
2020: $21.4 million
2021: $21.4 million
2022: $22 million option or $3 million buyout

  1. carbydrash - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:11 PM

    Ummm….wow. This is….wow.

    When comparing him to other big-time extensions, a few things need to be pointed out.

    1. Buster Posey has topped 500 PAs exactly once in his career.
    2. He’s under team control until 2017.

    I don’t need to actually point anything else out. I think that about covers why the Giants seem to be taking a pretty huge risk pretty prematurely.

    It may turn out just fine or even be a bargain in the long run. But damn, this shocked the hell out of me.

    • rvnc - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:28 PM

      Giants can’t afford to lose Posey, he’s such a massive component both in the clubhouse and on the field. In my book the bigger risk would be letting him hit the open market with the Dodgers able to spend so much money.

      • carbydrash - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:03 PM

        I don’t disagree…but it’s several years before he hits that market.

      • carbydrash - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:06 PM

        I should also say, in the event it sounds like I’m totally poo-pooing this deal that I’m not. I think it’s an overpay. BUT, if Posey proves healthy and is near caliber of player he was in 2012 throughout most of this contract…well, it will be something of a bargain, won’t it.

        No, not shitting on it, just surprised by it.

      • gibbyfan - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:56 PM

        I agree—Good move by the Giants to lock him up into that critical 35ishage area —wish the cards had done the same with Albert when the had the chance —Now, he will almost certainly be a Giant for life

    • bdonnelly9 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:29 PM

      Of course he only got up to 500 PA’s once in his three years of playing in the bigs. He was splitting time with Bengie Molina one year, had a season wrecked by an ankle injury, and then finally played a full season

      • carbydrash - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:04 PM

        Which I don’t deny. Just, in terms of big extensions, how many other players can you name who got 9 figure extensions with only one years in which they qualified for the batting title?

  2. sffan75 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:11 PM

    Yes! Love the move.

  3. dondada10 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    Good for Posey and the Giants.

  4. indaburg - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:18 PM

    Dayum. Teams are making it rain today.

  5. rvnc - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    I think the Giants had to do it. The term ‘Franchise Player’ is overused but we’re talking about a guy who less than three full years into his career and has won 2 world series, rookie of the year and an MVP. He could have a Jeter-esque career with the Giants and they have to make sure they keep him, particularly with teams like the Dodgers throwing huge money around.

    In the long term Posey moves to first base within three years so I don’t see injury being a big problem. If anything the deal represents good value because the Giants aren’t going to be paying for his ‘A-Rod’ years. As a fan I’m happy with it.

  6. paperlions - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    So many future Yankees/Red Sox/Dodgers/Angels choosing not to be.

    Sure, some of these deals may turn out badly, but I like seeing stars stay with the team they came up with….want a good team? Grow your own stars….makes for much more interesting baseball.

    • historiophiliac - Mar 29, 2013 at 5:07 PM

      *cough* Pujols *cough*

      • badintent - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:46 PM

        cough, another Giants signing for $ 150 million…BARRY ZITO.COUGH, COUGH,COUGH.

      • forsch31 - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:52 PM

        *cough* Molina *cough*

      • paperlions - Mar 29, 2013 at 8:41 PM

        Dang, whatever you guys have appears to be highly contagious….stay away.

  7. fhuizar - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    The 2 seasons he’s been healthy and played the Giants have won the series

    He does wonders for that rotation

    And has that ball he hit in Cincinnati landed yet?

  8. marklar1025 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    i understand the worry on PAs BUT…
    ROY, World Series Title, CombackPOY, Batting Title, Another World Series Title, MVP in his 2-ish seasons. Plus he has the “it” factor. The unequivocal face of the franchise. So happy to see this come down.

    • jdd428 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      Yeah, the Giants won the World Series each time he finished the regular season healthy. I’d say he’s pretty good.

  9. aceshigh11 - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:39 PM

    Great player, but quite a gamble, especially with his surgically-repaired leg.

  10. sportsdrenched - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    BREAKING: Verlander & Posey just bought the Nation of Cypress.

    • badintent - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:49 PM

      In other news , Goldman Sachs investment Bankers were sighted offering credit swaps to Cypress officals………”They worked great for Greece, Portugal, jsut bad timing they collapased on the market later”

    • johnstjc - Mar 29, 2013 at 10:17 PM

      they could probably buy half of europe right now

  11. icanspeel - Mar 29, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    I like how teams are actually trying to keep their stars for years to come. Seems like a breath of fresh air from all this free agency talk

  12. evanwins - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    And why not? The Twins/Mauer deal worked out great for both of them, right?

    Another commenter mentioned moving him to 1st but isn’t there some giraffe playing over there now…a giraffe under team control for the next 5 years?

    When ranked against the Pujols, Texiera, Fielder deals though, I think this is a great deal that gets a player through his most productive years, not the end of career years. Fielder will still be relatively young at the end of his deal too but with his body type that deal was a lot more risky than this one. Although I do think they could have waited 2-3 years while he’s still under their control and then made a similar but shorter deal. Probably would have saved them $20M but hey, who cares about $20M?

  13. Sorbet Te Charta Saccus - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:14 PM

    What a coincidence…neither of these guys have an agent with the name Scott Boras. Hmmmmm….imagine my surprise!!!!

  14. uyf1950 - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    WOW, hopefully Posey stay healthy for the length of the deal. He certainly is a difference maker on the Giants roster. And the way Lincecum has struggled it looks like the Giants won’t have to lay out a bunch of dollars to sign him long term now.

    • Sorbet Te Charta Saccus - Mar 29, 2013 at 5:03 PM

      Somebody missed the gravy train after winning two straight Cy Youngs. Yeah, he will have earned over $60 million so it’s not like he will be hurting for cash. But the fact is that he could have signed one of these contracts after the 2010 season, but he decided to hold the Giants to the fire year-to-year and now, well, let’s hope he puts away some of the $22 million he is getting this year, because I doubt he will see that type of contract again from anyone.

  15. jessethegreat - Mar 29, 2013 at 4:59 PM

    Of course he’s a great catcher… And handles the staff as well as he uses the stick…. But as the Twins have grown to learn: YOU NEVER TIE THIS MUCH OF YOUR PAYROLL INTO A CATCHER.

    • ptfu - Mar 29, 2013 at 7:34 PM

      Yeah, the track record of old catchers is not good. They’ll have to transition Posey to first base on an increasingly full time level. Fortunately, that’s already begun, as he played 216 innings at 1B last year. Yeah, he’s not as valuable at first as he is behind the plate, but it’s far better than if he’s banged up or on the DL.

      If the Panda can’t keep his weight down, his future may lie at first base as well.

      Brandon Belt better not get too comfortable, unless he learns in a hurry to be a corner outfielder.

  16. necr0philia - Mar 29, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    $hit I wouldn’t roll out of bed for that offer! I want Oprah Money or nothing. That’s why I live in a box under a bridge playing on this stolen iPhone. It’s pretty cool but wish the screen was bigger!! Hey any of you out there got a toothbrush and bedroom for rent?

  17. jcfrey - Mar 29, 2013 at 10:28 PM

    What the hell are you people on the west coast smoking thinking that this makes any semblance of sense? Good feelings, nice job etc, my ass. This is a business.

    In this day and age, why on earth would any team guarantee any player a 20 million dollar salary 9 years from now, especially when they probably didn’t have to do so?

    I’m not knocking Posey or what he’s capable of at this moment, just the term of the investment which has been made and how much. Its not football, you can’t cut a player and the $. Its not basketball, so you can’t amnesty or trade an expiring contract.

    In the long run, this contract will prove to be a burden for the Giants. I’ll save this post and we can discuss in 9 years.

    • jcfrey - Mar 29, 2013 at 10:35 PM

      8 years sorry. Still makes no sense.

    • jm91rs - Mar 30, 2013 at 8:25 AM

      Based on the money teams like the dodgers are pulling in on tv deals, a guy like posey will probably cost 30 mil per year in the next few years. Getting him now makes sense.

      And your nba analogy is useless. There is no cap in baseball, in the nBA the amnesty gets the guy of the books to help with the cap but the guy still gets paid.

    • jimeejohnson - Mar 30, 2013 at 12:23 PM

      We’re not smoking; we’re vaporizing, and not some hydro east coast garbage, but Humboldt’s finest outdoor.

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