Well, that speech isn’t exactly Lombardi….but close enough.
I could write you a long story of meeting Buster Posey when I was covering the minors, how shy he was about the attention he was getting, how focused a player he always was, and how I felt bad for writing that he was greedy and that the Giants shouldn’t have given him a record bonus out of the draft, not because I was wrong about him being worth it, but because I couldn’t see that greedy player whenever I looked at him.
But I won’t. You’ll get the heartfelt stories of how good a guy he is everywhere else. Seriously, he’s like the anti-Bonds. People can’t help but throw the words “Good guy” at him as if they were skee-balls at the boardwalk.
He’s a good guy. I don’t need to convince you of that, and I’m not going to say they’re wrong.
So here’s what I’m going to tell you: It’s nice to see a good guy win.
There’s a long-standing belief in my life that good guys don’t really win. They do well, but people like the bad guys, the guys with backstory and doubt and character arc. Everyone wants a good guy in their corner, but they want to be in the corner of a bad guy who turns good. Or just a bad guy. Whether it’s romance, or professionally, or even just among friends…that’s how I’ve seen it.
Maybe it’s a Hufflepuff complex.
But a good guy won MVP. And I’m not saying that other guys who’ve won it aren’t good guys. I’m not saying that Justin Verlander’s whole third-inning didn’t make him look like a collar-popping Atherton kid…and I’m not saying that a basement refrigerator has erased all my doubts about Ryan Braun. I’m just saying, I have no doubts about Posey, and it’s not just because I’m a Giants fan. He’s a good guy. And I like that a good guy can win so damn convincingly.
Maybe it wasn’t his good guy nature that helped him win. It’s not like I’ve heard bad things about Andrew McCutchen. Hell, it probably had nothing to do with being a good guy. It had everything to do with putting a team on his shoulders, handling a playoff push with grace, and flat out dominating the National League when it truly counted the most (not because of the months it happened in, but because of who was no longer batting beside him). It was a different kind of good that won him the MVP. A kind of goodness…even greatness…that can’t be learned, trained or anything else. You just have it.
But then, most good guys aren’t trying to win an MVP. They’re just trying to get ahead, do their own thing, or heaven forbid, be loved.
And if the MVP can be won by a good guy on the west coast who’s about as showy as a 2004 Honda Civic and about as sparkly as…well, whatever the opposite of that Twilight guy is…
Maybe there’s hope for us good guys to get the little things.
Of course, one probably has nothing to do with the other, but give me my emo moment, dammit.
Congratulations, Buster. You deserved this, and you make Giants fans proud to root for you. That’s been easier said than done with our recent past of MVP winners.