Buster Posey Silliness

In one of the most famous plays in baseball history, Pete Rose trucked catcher Ray Fosse in the 12th inning to win the 1970 all-star game. The all-star career of Ray Fosse was never the same.

As far as notable collisions at the plate go the Rose-Fosse crash ranks at number one. Notable collisions leading to career threatening injuries? The Rose-Fosse collision is the only one I can recall without taking a peek at Google. There’s a reason for that.

Until May 26th. On Thursday night, Buster Posey was run over by Scott Cousins, which lead to one of baseballs bright young stars fracturing his leg. Everyone from Buster Posey’s agent to the local butcher is now clamouring for the MLB to make a rule change.

Give me a break.

Hear me out on this one and then make your decision on how insensitive you think I am. I understand that the reigning Rookie of the Year was brutally injured in a play that some of you obviously think is unnecessary.

However, why has this suddenly become such a hot topic? It happened because of an extreme event. In other words, something that doesn’t occur on a regular basis. This cry for a rule change is a classic overreaction to a problem that has been virtually non-existent for a very long time.

This isn’t an epidemic like head shots are in the NFL or NHL. This is a single incident that people are reacting to in a completely illogical fashion. Unlike other more important things, catcher collisions haven’t been a persistent problem over the years.

Remember when 1st base coach Mike Coolbaugh died after being struck in the head with a line drive? That was a tragic incident. Nevertheless, the fact that all base coaches now have to wear helmets because of one freak event is ridiculous. One coach gets struck in the head and its panic everywhere. I don’t mean to be insensitive but it isn’t only professional baseball where base coaches are at risk, it’s also baseball being played around North America and the world. One coach, that’s it.

Buster Posey was never at risk of dying on that play. Catching isn’t for the weary and Posey was involved in a typical baseball play. Catchers are aware of what they sign up for when they play professional ball.

Head first slides have become somewhat of a problem around baseball so why isn’t everyone clamouring for head first slides to be made illegal? Cold hard facts will tell you that more guys get hurt sliding head first than colliding with a catcher. No risk of death but serious injuries are involved. Just ask Josh Hamilton or Aaron Hill.

Many of you have probably been to the airport and recently been patted down or had your bag checked excessively by your friendly neighbourhood TSA agent. It’s kind of amusing when the 80-year-old lady is examined in front of her two little granddaughters because all this nonsense stems from the governments nonsensical reaction to a couple of radical incidents. At least people’s lives are on the line here.

A more apparent issue that the MLB is facing, that most are oblivious to, is baseball’s own version of the head shot. Intentionally beaning a player merely for revenge or because they are crowding the plate much should be scary thought yet to most fans it isn’t.

It will be a scary thought when someone dies. This is a part of baseball culture that should be banished. A 95 mph heat seeking fastball to the head is a much more important issue than collisions with the catcher. Nothing has happened yet but when something does you will see that similar panic reaction from around the country and rightfully so.

The thing is, throwing at someone’s head is far different from colliding with a catcher or a foul ball hitting a base coach. A collision with the catcher doesn’t pose nearly the same risks and a foul ball is entirely unintentional. A pitcher who chooses to aim for a vulnerable part of the body is something that can be controlled. If a line drive can kill a base coach than a fastball can too.

It’s okay though, nothing has happened yet so we shouldn’t worry about it. Right?

Old school NFL fans feel that the new rules are ruining the integrity of the game of football. They don’t care or understand the real danger that is concussions. With all the information we are learning about concussions, having a player knocked out each week because of an unnecessary hit is, well, unnecessary.

Buster Posey may not have been blocking the plate but this is a baseball play that certainly does not carry the same great risk. Excessive preventative measures are not in order here. By changing the rule the MLB would be putting its own version of the “may cause drowsiness” label on the bottle of sleeping pills.

This isn’t little league folks, where I’m sure you would be happy to learn that initiating contact with a catcher is illegal.

What’s almost worse is that this silly reaction is because Buster Posey is a star player. If this was Rod Barajas the issue would be swept under the rug.

The whole logic behind the reaction to Buster Posey’s injury is misguided. An insignificant issue wrongly thrust into the spotlight because of a rare accident involving a star player.

Last year, Kendry Morales suffered a broken leg celebrating a walk-off home-run. Suddenly, rowdy walk-off celebrations became a thing of the past because of another freak incident. Doesn’t make any sense does it?

Major League Baseball does not need to respond in this type of manner to the Buster Posey incident. Contrary to Harold Camping’s belief, the apocalypse is not upon us so let’s not react to this as if it is.

The rule doesn’t need to be changed. This isn’t helmet-to-helmet NFL style. Buster Posey was the victim of a legal baseball play that has to stay legal.

Agree? Disagree? If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, please feel free to reply in the comments section below. Or you can e-mail me at cross_can15@hotmail.com. Also, follow me on twitter @paintstheblack and I will gladly return the favour.

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About Chris Ross
Questions, comments, suggestions? Send yours to cross_can15@hotmail.com. Follow me on twitter @paintstheblack

13 Responses to Buster Posey Silliness

  1. tophatal says:

    Chris Ross

    Call me back when baseball players are actually suffering from neuroencephaloameyopathy in the way that veteran NFL players have been . Namely the late Dave Duerson . Besides the baseball hierarchy couldn’t give a _hit about the players to begin with !

    tophatal ………………

  2. chappy81 says:

    Nice post. Totally agree this was a once in a long time thing. I guess it did happen to Carlos Santana last year and he was out for the season, but since he isn’t really a star yet, it kinda got brushed under the rug like it should’ve been when a freak accident happens…

  3. Stuff happens and to tophatal, the NFL does not equal the MLB. Of course NFL players have more injuries it’s a sport made around tackling and hits will happen. This is the one of the few plays where collisions can happen. It still sucks and they still have injuries but just because people have it worse doesn’t mean that we can’t feel for them.

    I agree with you too. They never changed the HR celebrations due to that. People may have changed HOW they celebrated but there’s no need for a rule. I’m sure that catchers having seen this will be a bit more careful and that should be enough.

  4. This is good stuff you have here Chris (and I appreciate your comments on my post as well). I think using the 1st Base coach who died because of a line drive to the head is a poor example of the point you are making though, because as you admit, those line drives are far more dangerous than collisions at the plate. But for the most part, I agree. We’re overreacting to the situation at hand, and in a month or so, this will all simmer down until the next big story comes out (Unless the Giants collapse in epic fashion, in which case the outcry for a rule change will be too loud for MLB to ignore). Posey knew what he was signing up for, and Cousins isn’t a dirty player for his hit either.
    Good stuff Chris, I look forward to reading more of your work!

    • Honestly I don’t think the coach getting hit in the head was a poor example, it was a freak incident that sprouted an inane rule change. I know the situation was tragic but it is never going to happen again, besides the point that where that coach got hit (on the lower part of the back of his head) is not even covered by the batting helmets the 1st and 3rd base coaches now wear. The rule change wouldn’t have even helped that incident, and coaches still have to be as weary of line drives as they ever have (and noting that it took more than 100 years of baseball for that to happen, I don’t think it is likely to happen again).
      I can’t help but feel a rule change for blocking the plate would have the same effect, basically nothing. Just leave the game as it is, this was a freak incident because of bad technique on Posey’s part, and he got injured because of it, that’s why there is a proper form to blocking the plate. Let’s all really hope that this incident is not magnified if the Giants tank the rest of the year, everyone should just keep a level head about this non-problem.

      • Chris Ross says:

        Thank you for agreeing with me lol. I was just going to reply to other people now about why I used that example. I didn’t use the example as something a part of the game because I thought it was fairly obvious that it wouldn’t have any effect on the game. I used it as an example to show the effect of how we react to incidents like this and how wrong it is to react in that manner.

    • tophatal says:


      It’s not that I have a disconnect here but the simple fact both hierarchies MLB and the NFL over the years have shown little concern for the safety of the players .

      And until they become proactive and deal with such issues then we’re liable to see these incidents happen repeatedly .

      How long did it take Goodell and his members to admit that there was a cause and effect to helmet to helmet hits ? And that’s even in light of the fact that medical evidence was provided to the league . With baseball Selig has simply walked around with his head buried in the sand . The illicit of use of PED’s has long term effects and can harm the players but this a_s (Selig) in conjunction MLBPA fought tooth and nail against testing only to be forced to address it when Congress started to push them .

      At the end of the day the umpires will have to watch closely and deem what they believe to be illegal in terms of the hits on the diamond.

      tophatal ………………

  5. Part of the risk taken… that’s why they call catcher’s gear the “tools of ignorance”

  6. rjr191 says:

    First, thanks for reading and replying to my site http://roseythoughts.net/ I really enjoyed reading this. You make some really good points, many of them similar to what I was saying.

    The one thing I somewhat disagree with is the reference you made to the base coaches. That is a measure that doesn’t have any affect on the game, so why not make that change.

    Other than that, this was a really good read, keep up the good work. I will be back to read more.

  7. I’ve been telling my friends this ever since the collision. Stuff happens, you know? The catcher isn’t someone who the MLB has to protect. Anyway, this stuff happens once or twice a season. Last year, Kendry Morales slipped on home plate and broke his leg. Should the MLB ban players from jumping on home plate and celebrating with teammates? NO. Same goes for Chris Coghlan when he got hurt throwing pie on a teammates face. Injuries are a natural part of the game, collisions at home plate is a part of the game. Oh, and THE NEXT DAY Prince Fielder tried to run over the backup for San Francisco.

  8. I could not agree with you more. It was a clean hit, a standard play and an unusual and unfortunate outcome. We wish Posey a speedy recovery, and that should be the end of the story. The rules are fine as they are. You have to be more than a bit of a badass to be a catcher. It’s part of what makes the game great.
    By the way, Kendrys’ accident didn’t change walkoff celebrations as near as I can tell (nor should it have). All Kendrys did was jump up and down on the plate surrounded by his teammates in a big circle also jumping up and down and patting/bashing him on the shoulders, back and helmet. This still happens every day, which is how I hope this Posey craziness ends too – MLB talks about it a lot and then things go right back to the way they’ve always been/should be.
    — Kristen

  9. Don says:

    I completely disagree. Posey was clearly in front of the plate by a full yard upon contact!….and Cousins had a wide open lain to the plate. Cousins was clearly going to be out if the ball was caught and he knew it. His only hope was to change his angle and plow into the Posey to dislodge the ball. Fans may like collisions at the plate so no one wants this to be illegal. I believe if you clearly have a lane to the plate it should be taken. There’s no way the fielder can stay completely out of the “base path” and make a tag. I don’t think Cousin’s was trying to make it to the plate nor was he colliding with a catcher blocking the plate. He took a shot at the catcher “out of the baseline” to dislodge the ball. Most people disagree with me, but IMO this was cheap.
    Like it has been stated time and time again, this doesn’t happen very often so no rule change needs to be made. This doesn’t happen very often because most people will take the Plate over slamming someone out of the basline!!!

  10. Don says:

    Further, This is not like a Coach getting hit with a lined drive. It’s more like a fooball player taking a cheap shot out of bounds!

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