By process of arbitration, the Giants will retain rights to Buster Posey from 2013-2016; as his current contract stands, he’ll enter the free agent market in 2017 at age 30. If the Giants decide to go year-to-year with Posey, it’s not hard to imagine Buster making around $20M in 2016. ...
Ideally in any contract extension with a player of Posey’s caliber, you’re buying out portions of his free agent years, too. Spit-balling, I think we can comfortably set the bar around $18M for buying out Posey’s first free agent season in 2017. Baseball is flush with cash and the sport seems more profitable than ever. And for the Giants, coming off two World Series titles in three years, things look bright. The Giants consistently sell out home games at AT&T Park and have shown that they don’t mind locking up their homegrown talent such as Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner. Posey should, theoretically, be no different.
Chris estimates a seven-year, $110 million extension to buy out three seasons of Posey's free-agency years, which would take Posey through his age-32 season. That would certainly be a more team-friendly contract than the $184 million deal the Twins gave Joe Mauer that takes Mauer through his age-35 season. There's no urgency for the Giants to sign Posey, of course, and it may be worth waiting a year to see if he repeats the numbers he put up in winning the NL MVP. You don't want to make the mistake the Twins did in believing Mauer's power surge in his MVP season of 2009 was for real. In Posey's case, the question isn't so much the power, but the batting average; he did much of his damage by hitting .433 against left-handed pitching, a figure likely to regress in 2013.
The Giants have Cain signed through 2017 (with a 2018 option) and Bumgarner signed through 2017 with club options for 2018 and 2019. Bumgarner's deal -- if he stays healthy and pitches like he has -- is very team-friendly, topping out at $11.5 million with $12 million club options. The Giants won't get Posey that cheap but it certainly makes sense to begin those long-term talks with their foundation position player.