Colliding Beliefs

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The Collision.  That’s all you have to say this morning and people will know exactly what you’re talking about.

While the Phillies 19 inning victory over the Reds captured many headlines this morning, the situation creating the most buzz around baseball surrounds last night’s Giants vs. Marlins game.  The event that will be debated at length is the devastating clash at the plate between Scott Cousins and Buster Posey.

The game would have been fairly prominent today even without the 12th inning collision, as Florida blew a four run 9th inning lead to send the contest into extras.  Current MLB saves leader Leo Nunez blew his first of the season, as the contest was extended on Aubrey Huff’s single to left.

Looking back, I’m sure the Giants wish Huff would have simply struck out, ending the game and saving the team the agony that was to come.

With the score remaining knotted 6-all, the Marlins looked to take the lead on an Emilio Bonifacio sac fly.  The play ended with this grisly collision at home.

Talk surrounding the injury sustained by Posey is not about whether or not the young catcher will miss time, but how much time he will miss.  His leg went in a direction no leg is meant to go, and some speculate he could be done for the year.

San Francisco is understandably devastated.  Posey is a team leader.  Though only 24, he handles catching duties and bats cleanup for the Giants.

While awaiting the severity of the injury, many have spent the day debating the issues surrounding last night’s unfortunate play at the plate.

Posey’s agent has come out with his thoughts.

"“You leave players way too vulnerable,” Berry said. “I can tell you Major League Baseball is less than it was before [Posey’s injury]. It’s stupid. I don’t know if this ends up leading to a rule change, but it should. The guy [at the plate] is too exposed.”"

This guy obviously has more at stake involving the injury than most, so it makes sense that he’s fired up.  But I don’t agree that this case warrants a rule change.

Currently, there are rules included by MLB to prevent such occurrences as last night.  It even specifically states that, “the catcher, without the ball in his possession, has no right to block the pathway of the runner attempting to score”.

Just so we’re clear, I don’t think anyone’s at fault here.  To me this is simply one of those unfortunate plays that happen over the course of a season.  Two guys playing hard, doing what they’ve been trained to do.

Growing up, players are taught to hustle out grounders just as they are taught to go in hard at second to break up a double play just as catchers are taught to block the plate.

While it’s easy to question the validity of the play the day after, there is no doubt the media would have found something to scrutinize no matter the result.

If Posey didn’t block the plate, fans would be in an uproar, calling for him to toughen up and do his job.  If Cousins made a half hearted attempt or simply walked into the tag to avoid a collision, Marlins fans would recommend he do the same.

There was nothing dirty about the play, both were doing what they needed to do to give their team a shot to win the game.  Just because something bad happens does not mean someone has to be at fault.

Two guys playing hard.

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