Buster Posey defends SF Giants owner’s ‘somewhat break even’ comment

Buster Posey of the San Francisco Giants, sitting with his wife Kristen Posey, speaks at a press conference announcing his retirement from Major League Baseball at Oracle Park on Nov. 4, 2021, in San Francisco.

Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Buster Posey’s reputation as a great teammate has made its way from the clubhouse to the owner’s box.

The San Francisco Giants legend was once again tasked with defending the nonsense of a fellow owner. During Bob Melvin’s introductory press conference as San Francisco’s new manager, SFGATE sports editor Alex Simon asked Giants chairman Greg Johnson about what fans should expect the team to spend on the roster in relation to MLB’s competitive balance tax.

Johnson meandered about how spending more does not necessarily mean winning more, and that the organization will get “active” during free agency “if we have to go through that.” However, it was the next line that stuck in the craw of many fans.


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“But we also represent a group that hopefully our goal is to somewhat break even, which is somewhat a challenge in this business,” Johnson said. “But everybody, I can tell you, from the ownership side: The goal is to win. And we’re doing everything we can.”

The second part naturally fell on deaf ears as Giants ownership explicitly defined their first listed goal as “to somewhat break even.”

Posey, who joined the organization’s ownership group as a principal partner in September 2022 and is currently on the Giants’ six-person board of directors, appeared on KNBR’s “Murph & Mac Show” Thursday where he was asked about these comments. The former NL MVP defended the team chairman and his intentions with a classic deflection about lost context.

“I’ve gotten to know Greg really well, and one thing that I’ll say about Greg — and I think sometimes stuff, whichever way it comes out, gets taken out of context,” Posey said. “Greg, first and foremost, loves the San Francisco Giants. And I know wholeheartedly that it’s his intent to put a championship team on the field. There’s no doubt in my mind about that whatsoever.”


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The seven-time All-Star later added that he believes “Greg is 100% on board with trying to put the best team out there for us to not only win, but have fun.”

This is the third time that Posey has had to step up and be the PR mediator for a fellow owner. After joining Giants ownership, Bay Area News Group asked about principal owner Charles Johnson’s huge donations to election-denying, QAnon-supporting Republican politicians. Posey gave a familiar response that didn’t address the issue.

“My interactions with Mr. Johnson have been great,” Posey said. “I have only been around him a couple of times. They’ve been wonderful. That’s all I’m going to say about it. I can only speak to my own interactions.”

Back in February, writer Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic again asked the former catcher about Charles Johnson’s donations. Posey gave a long-winded nonanswer that concluded with, “I think we all speak too quickly on things we’re not completely sure about. So I don’t want to do that.”


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Part of the benefit of having a celebrity as part of an ownership group is that by simply existing, they can provide good PR for an organization. The Giants have taken a more active approach in this relationship, using Posey as a PR repairman that fixes the problems the other owners create. Perhaps it’d be easier, and smarter, to let only Posey speak for ownership in the first place. That way, if he has to clean up a mistake, at least it’s his own.

More coverage of Bay Area sports team owners


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