Buster Posey is hitting in cage and catching bullpen sessions

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Buster Posey’s surgically repaired left leg is strong enough that he caught an eight-minute bullpen session yesterday at the Giants’ instructional league complex in Arizona, according to Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle.

That means Posey is slightly ahead of schedule, as the Giants had set November 1 as the target date for catching live pitching.

Giants trainer Dave Groeschner told Schulman that Posey “is feeling good and progressing well” from the May 25 collision at home plate that ended his season. In addition to catching the bullpen sessions he’s also been hitting in a cage, so barring a setback Posey should be cleared for a full workload heading into spring training.

Pirates pitcher Steven Brault sang the National Anthem last night

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Pittsburgh Pirates swingman Steven Brault has a 4.38 ERA in 19 games this year. He also has a music degree and is a professional singer on the side of his baseball gig. He didn’t get into last night’s game against the Brewers as a pitcher, but he did get to use his singing skills.

Specifically, Brault got to sing the National Anthem. And he did an OK job of it too. He’s not Whitney Houston or anything, but he did what all Anthem singers who are not as gifted as Whitney Houston was should do: he kept it straight and businesslike, avoiding unnecessary flourishes:

It’s march, dang it, not a ballad, and it should be treated as such. Unless of course you’re Whitney Houston.