Buster Posey was voted the Face of MLB in an impressive display of social media and marketing on Thursday, narrowly defeating David Wright in an online vote. For winning the title, Posey was awarded the satisfaction of knowing that he helped the brand and visibility of MLB and the MLB Network.
Buster Posey, America turns its lonely eyes to you. Save us.
The award was created by marketing wizards in an underground bunker beneath Madison Avenue, and it was designed to flood your Twitter feed with stealth advertising. You sheep. You vacuous sheep. I can't believe that you all fell f ... wait, a Giants player won? Looks like I'd better write that up for McCovey Chronicles, a Giants website! Congratulations to one of our favorite players!
Does that read cynical? Good. It should. Andrew McCutchen lost to Todd Frazier in the first round of this bracket. Andrew McCutchen lost to Todd Frazier in the first round of this bracket. If the Face of MLB were chosen by a panel of 12 hardcore baseball fans, McCutchen would be in the final four, at least. He baseballs the hell out of everything and is one of the most well-rounded players in the game, but he isn't built like a linebacker, which is the post-BALCO template that reminds us of vintage baseball stars. He also smiles a lot. And he chases ducks.
Get out of here, ducks. Filthy things.
Now between McCutchen and Posey, who would I vote for? It's impossible to be objective, considering that I whisper "Be more like Buster Posey, and your dreams will come true" into my wife's ear as she sleeps at night, hoping to shape her subconscious and make her a better person. Posey is a great choice, though, as he's one of the most successful players in baseball history in several different respects, and he's also young and handsome. He can be goofy or intense when the situation dictates, and that's just what we want our baseball stars to be, Yeah, I could get behind him as the face of baseball in an objective sense. It's close between him and Andrew McCutchen, but Posey is a fine choice.
But McCutchen lost to Todd Frazier, who might not win an objective vote for Face of MLB Players Named Todd. This makes me think this whole thing is ... less than scientific? Something that's more about how well the player's team can leverage its social media base?
There I go, getting cynical again. There was a popularity contest, and a Giants player won. Think back to 2005 or 1995 or 1985 or 1975 and imagine that sentence making sense. If the Giants had a star in those years, the rest of the world hated him. Posey, though, is a very popular, respected Giant with three World Series titles and several awards of note, who does everything right like few players before him. At its core, this still might be an effective, impressive, transparent marketing campaign for a television network, but it's still kind of cool that Posey won.
There have been some boring, bummer eras of Giants baseball since the team moved to San Francisco. Here's yet another reminder that this isn't one of them. Here's yet another reminder that we're almost certainly in the Golden Era of the franchise. A lot of that has to do with Buster Posey, the Face of MLB, and don't you forget it.