It's been nearly 17 months since Buster Posey last appeared in a Major League Baseball game. The 33-year-old former MVP and three-time World Series champion opted out of the 2020 season after he and his wife, Kristen, adopted twin girls in the summer.
Entering his 12th big-league campaign, Posey has taken an alternative approach to get his arm ready for the rigors of a 162-game season—and his baby girls are playing a key role in that process.
Speaking to reporters Wednesday at the Giants' spring training facility in Scottsdale, Ariz., Posey detailed how he's been working diaper-changing time into his throwing program. Posey's 9-year-old son Lee is not particularly fond of participating in the process, so Posey has used Lee's aversion to used diapers as an opportunity to practice throwing at moving targets.
"[My son] is not so much on changing diapers. The fun thing with him is I'll change a diaper from a baby and ball it up real tight," Posey said. "He knows I'm about to fire it at him, so he'll go running. I've been keeping my arm in shape that way by firing diapers at him."
Lee was unavailable for comment on how he felt about the exercise, but that didn't stop Posey from elaborating on how he approaches his latest training tactic.
"You have to really make sure that you have the right weight of the diaper," Posey said. "Depending on how well [the twins] have been feeding, that plays a lot into my accuracy if it's equivalent to the weight of a baseball. You take all of that into account, the type of formula they've gotten, if they're eating baby food or not. Yeah, I've been pretty accurate."
Statcast data only goes back to 2015, but Posey has improved his pop time to second base from 2.07 seconds in 2015 to 2.0 seconds in 2019. His pop time to third base has improved each year since 2015.
It's unclear how much more similar MLB's newly-deadened ball will be compared to a soiled diaper, so Posey's early season performance will be something to monitor. Posey is in the final year of his contract, though the Giants have a team option for 2022. If his new training methods pay dividends, perhaps another contract extension is in order.