Posey pleased after catching five, running bases

Posey pleased after catching five, running bases
March 16, 2012, 10:28 pm
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MESA, Ariz. It wasnt much of a test, but Buster Posey ranthe bases Friday his first game experience as a baserunner in more than ninemonths.

Posey was 1 for 2 with a walk, and both times he didntadvance. He ran on fly balls with two outs, both times hitting second base withhis right foot.

One small step for man

Im sure its in the back of my mind, said Posey, abouthitting the base with his good foot. But when youre trying to get from onebase to another, its not going to happen every time.

Posey caught a spring-high five innings and said he washappy with it again. The next step is to get five at-bats as a DH in minorleague camp on Saturday. Hell lead off every inning. In that relaxed-rules environment, he could elect to use apinch runner each time, too. But hes not planning on it.

Show off my speed, he said.

Manager Bruce Bochy plans to give Posey a long break after Saturday's activity. He'll rest Posey on Sunday and the team is off Monday. The plan is for Posey to get back behind the plate on Tuesday and catch six innings.

Posey didnt show any noticeable signs of struggle with his surgically repaired left ankle and he formed a solid battery with left-hander Eric Surkamp, then Jeremy Affeldt.

I thought he looked good, Posey said of Surkamp, whoallowed just a home run to Mike Rizzo in four innings. He did a good jobmixing pitches. With command of his fastball, he struggled in the first inning.But he got better as he went along.

Surkamp struck out four, walked one and flashed a goodbreaking ball that resulted in some swing-throughs. Surkamp also hasincorporated his slider in his last two outings.

That comes with just getting arm speed back, Surkamp said.The first couple outings, I felt my arm stopping. Its just keeping the armmoving along with the lower body.

About Posey, Surkamp said, He looked great. Its nicethrowing to him. He puts down the signs and you just roll with it.

Posey, whose first hit of the spring was a home run on Wednesday, had a good at-bat while lining a single in the second inning. With a two-strike count against Cubs left-hander Matt Garza, Posey threw his bat at an outside pitch and got enough barrel on it to whistle it past the second baseman.

You never unlearn how to hit, do you?

"Any time you can go deep into the count and get barrel on a tough pitch, you're happy with the at-bat," Posey said.

Bochy liked what he saw from his cleanup hitter, too.

"He's not there. He's got a ways to go, and he'd tell you that," Bochy said. "But to see him with two strikes, going the other way on a pretty good breaking ball, that's what he does so well. He's one of those talents (who) has the ability to adjust on the fly. That's what he did with that pitch. He's a great two-strike hitter, So I think that was a great sign."

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