- Full name Gerald Dempsey Posey
- Born 03/27/1987 in Leesburg, GA
- Profile Ht.: 6'1" / Wt.: 213 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Florida State
- Debut 09/11/2009
Drafted in the 1st round (5th overall) by the San Francisco Giants in 2008 (signed for $6,200,000).
View Draft ReportPosey was recruited out of high school by Florida State to play shortstop, and he started all 65 games there for the Seminoles as a freshman. Following the 2006 season, however, Posey was asked to move behind the plate and catch for the first time in his life. He took to it naturally and two seasons later is considered the top catching prospect, both defensively and offensively, in the country. His offensive numbers this season, including a .471 average, put him among the national leaders in several categories. His receiving, footwork and release are all advanced, and his athleticism is apparent. Posey's arm strength (he reaches 94 mph off the mound) and accuracy are pluses as well. At the plate, Posey has above-average bat speed and makes consistent contact. He has power to all fields but will probably be known more for his batting average than home runs. Drafted out of high school by the Angels in the 50th round in 2005, Posey is regarded as one of the safest picks in this year's draft. His projection as an offensive catcher with Gold Glove-caliber defense has boosted Posey's draft stock as much as anyone's over the weeks leading up to the draft.
Organization Prospect Rankings
posey won Baseball America's College Player of the Year and the Golden Spikes awards in his final season at Florida State in 2008, and he's certainly the golden boy in a system that hasn't developed an all-star position player in two decades. Not since Will Clark and Matt Williams has a hitting prospect been so eagerly anticipated in San Francisco. Since receiving the largest up-front bonus in major league history ($6.2 million, since surpassed by Stephen Strasburg) as the fifth overall pick in the 2008 draft, Posey has worn seven uniforms in parts of two pro seasons--including a major league jersey when the club promoted him Sept. 2. He watched more than he played, though, after Bengie Molina's strained quad healed. Fans voiced their disapproval as manager Bruce Bochy sat Posey down the stretch, and they figure to be even more upset if he isn't the Giants' catcher on Opening Day. Posey draws legitimate comparisons to Joe Mauer. He's a pure hitter with terrific strike-zone awareness, and his clean, unfettered swing allows him to drive pitches from pole to pole. For a team full of impatient hitters, his sound, disciplined approach will be a most welcome tonic. No hyperbole: He's a better two-strike hitter than anyone on the major league roster. Power isn't his best tool, but he had 18 homers and 50 extra-base hits in the minors last season. His approach allows him to get into counts where he can get pitches to drive. Posey has tremendous baseball athleticism. He once played all nine positions in a game for the Seminoles, and flashed a 94 mph fastball as an occasional reliever. Not surprisingly, his arm strength and accuracy grade well-above-average. He threw out 46 percent of basestealers in the minors in 2009. He's an average runner--well-above-average for a catcher--who maximizes his opportunities on the bases. Posey's mental acuity is off the charts and he's a leader on the field. He carries himself like a veteran and seems immune to the immense expectations that follow him. For all the strides Posey has made as a catcher, the mechanics of the position haven't become second nature yet. He's still working to improve his receiving and has problems handling quality fastballs with late life. Passed balls have been an issue, and he has committed 15 in 120 pro games. The Giants want him to get stronger in order to handle the grind of a full season. Ideally, the Giants would like Posey to log another 150 games at Triple-A Fresno before handing him a pair of major league shinguards for keeps. But San Francisco has a need behind the plate, so Posey's spring training began in October. Though he was coming off a full season, he headed to the Arizona Fall League to get more game experience while also allowing the Giants to evaluate his readiness. Eventually, Posey should be a perennial all-star and another high-average hitter to pair with Pablo Sandoval in the middle of their lineup.
Posey led NCAA Division I in hitting (.463), on-base percentage (.566), slugging (.879), hits (119), total bases (226) and RBIs (93) in 2008, en route to winning Baseball America's College Player of the Year and the Golden Spikes awards. The Rays considered him with the first overall pick, but he slid to the Giants at No. 5. He received the largest up-front bonus in draft history, $6.2 million. There might have been better pure athletes in the draft, but Posey has few peers when it comes to baseball athleticism. He was drafted out of high school as a pitcher and moved from shortstop to catcher at Florida State, where he once played all nine positions in one game. He profiles as a catcher in the mold of Joe Mauer. Posey has a quick bat and makes consistent contact with gap power to all fields. Arm strength isn't a problem, as he hit 94 mph as an occasional reliever for the Seminoles. He's agile and has soft hands, and he even runs well. He's a captain on the field and wins plaudits for his baseball acumen. Posey is still relatively new to catching and will need time to develop behind the plate, especially his game-calling skills. He had trouble with passed balls in Hawaii Winter Baseball and was sent back to instructional league for a crash course in receiving. Despite his huge power numbers as a college junior, some scouts believe he won't hit more than 10-12 homers annually in the majors. Posey doesn't have to hit for huge power to be an all-star. He's versatile enough to play anywhere on the diamond, but most valuable as a catcher. He's probably headed for Double-A, where he'll catch a talented pitching staff.
Minor League Top Prospects
Posey blistered PCL pitching during his time in the league and has no glaring flaws as a hitter. He has a balanced swing and keeps his bat in the hitting zone for a long time with excellent plate coverage. He controls the strike zone and drives balls to all fields, rarely getting fooled. His power is still developing, but he projects to be an annual 20-homer threat. "I put him down as the best hitter in the league," Salt Lake manager Bobby Mitchell said. "He's far advanced for his age, as a hitter especially, and he's proven it. He's gone up to the big leagues and done a great job for them." Posey famously struggled with handling quality stuff early in his pro career, but he has come a long way defensively and allowed just one passed ball in 32 games with Fresno. He improved his set-up behind the plate, as well as his footwork on his throws. He used his strong arm to erase 44 percent of PCL basestealers, and he also garnered praise for his leadership qualities.
The Giants invested $6.2 million in Posey after making him the fifth overall pick in the 2008 draft, yet he already looks like he might be a steal. He draws raves for his poise and maturity. He has an outstanding mind for the game, both at and behind the plate, where he was able to learn his pitchers quickly and play to their strengths. Posey's physical tools aren't lacking either. He has a compact swing with pop to all fields. His raw power isn't tremendous, but his disciplined approach allows him to get in favorable counts where he can get pitches to drive. He rarely swings at bad pitches and has shown he can adjust quickly if he does get fooled. A shortstop before converting to catcher in 2007 at Florida State, Posey has good hands and agility behind the plate, a strong arm and a compact throwing motion. He threw out 38 percent of PCL basestealers. Passed balls were a problem when he first arrived in pro ball, but he calmed that problem somewhat with the Grizzlies, allowing just four in 33 games.
Now that Matt Wieters has graduated to the major leagues, Posey is the top catching prospect in baseball. Hitting .326/.416/.531 and throwing out 49 percent of basestealers at San Jose bolstered his reputation, and he earned promotions to Triple-A Fresno and later to San Francisco. Posey is a strong and athletic catcher with no obvious flaw in his game. He's a mature hitter with strength, a good setup and the ability to use the entire field. He runs very well for a catcher, is extremely athletic behind the plate and has a slightly above-average arm. The only question with Posey is how well he'll handle the premium stuff of Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain in San Francisco. Posey is poised to replace Bengie Molina, an impending free agent, in the majors in 2010.
Top 100 Rankings
Best Tools List
- Rated Best Hitter for Average in the National League in 2013
- Rated Best Batting Prospect in the Pacific Coast League in 2010
- Rated Best Defensive Catcher in the San Francisco Giants in 2010
- Rated Best Strike-Zone Discipline in the San Francisco Giants in 2010
- Rated Best Hitter for Average in the San Francisco Giants in 2010
- Rated Best Defensive Catcher in the California League in 2009
- Rated Best Hitter for Average in the San Francisco Giants in 2009