One Fan’s Take on Posey & the Giants

Injuries are just part of baseball. They are part of what makes it so difficult for a good team to repeat the success of their prior year. I do think that most ballplayers expect to either play hurt or be injured at some point in their professional career. I do think that this is an extremely difficult situation for players especially since they want to make a contribution to the success of their team.

I did absolutely hate to see Buster Posey get hurt in a collision at home plate. And, to see him out for the rest of the season was utterly awful. I have watched Scott Cousins’ collision with Buster Posey multiple times, and I get a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach each time i see it.

Image taken from Google Imgaes via the Bleacher Report

I am a die hard Giants fan!! And I always have been. However, there are several things that should be pointed out. Buster Posey was blocking the plate and did not have possession of the ball. I do also think that the way Posey set himself up at home plate to receive the ball from the outfielder did look physically awkward with his leg pinned under himself. I do think that this made Posey, in all likelihood more susceptible to a severe injury, which is what did happen when he was hit by Scott Cousins.

I do not think that it was the intention of Scott Cousins to hurt Buster Posey, and put him out for the rest of the year. It is just something that happened like a freak accident. I do also recognize that emotions have tended to run high since Posey’s injury have cost the Giants one of their big contributors from last year’s World Series team.

The next step after Posey’s season-ending injury is for the Giants to regroup, as a team, and try to move forward from it. I think that professional athletes have the ability to regroup mentally out of necessity, because they have been conditioned to do so. I do think that it is more difficult for fans to do so, since fans are on the outside looking in, and players tend to be an insular group, as a team.

Recently, I was hanging out with a group of friends and we were watching the Giants play the Cardinals. One of my friends, Robert, was trying to bait me by rooting for the Cardinals. I did find this to be ironic since Robert is a Cincinnati Reds fan, and it was better for the Reds if the Cards lose since they are in the same division. I told Robert that a half game in the standings in June may not matter now, but it may have a huge impact in September, when your team is fighting for a playoff spot. This is constantly evident between the “have” teams and the “have not” teams, teams fighting to be in the playoffs.

So, now, it is up to the Giants to regroup, and go forward with the rest of the season. The starting catcher is now Eli Whiteside. There were rumors that the Giants might go out and get another catcher, possibly bringing back the now-retired former catcher Bengie Molina or picking up Ivan Rodriguez. I have heard that Molina is no longer in playing shape, and that the Giants are not interested in pursuing a trade yet for a catcher, just yet.

I did forget to mention that the Giants had three other significant injuries– Barry Zito with a sprained foot, Pablo Sandoval with a broken hamate bone, and Mark DeRosa with an injured wrist. Zito and  Sandoval may be coming back fairly soon, but for DeRosa, it may be the end of his career after re-agrivating the same wrist that he injured last year.
The loss of Zito was made slightly better with the emergence of Ryan Vogelsong, a Giants draft pick from 2001. Vogelsong has been around the block– traded to the Pirates in the Jason Schmidt deal and then, to Japan and now back to the Giants. He is doing very well, which creates even more questions of what happens when Zito does come back.
With the loss of Sandoval, Miguel Tejeda moved over to third base, rookie Brandon Crawford has been playing shortstop. Crawford does have a solid glove, and his bat has been a pleasant surprise. Crawford hit a grand slam home run in his first game as a Giant versus the St. Louis Cardinals.

There is a new surprise team in the National League West this year, the Arizona Diamondback. They have a revamped bullpen, and have been a solid team for the first couple months of the season. However, being realistic, I do expect them to fade before the end of the season.

Of course, the Giants are not the only team to have to deal with injuries. They are, of course, the defending World Series Champions, but it remains to be seen what will happen the rest of the baseball season. I do expect the Giants to have a lag with the loss of Buster Posey, but the Giants seemed to have picked it up– taking three of four from St. Louis on the road to close out May, as they head into June.

It does look like a repeat of last year– inconsistent hitting, good pitching and solid defense. So, basically, it is one year later, and still more torture. Ah, you’ve got to love this game….

One Comment

  1. hilarie

    June 13, 2011 at 8:39 pm

    One part of this is just absolutely false:

    “Posey was blocking the plate and did not have possession of the ball.”

    The second part is true — he didn’t have the ball. The first part is wrong. You cannot “block the plate” while being on your knees three feet up the 1b line with your body facing the outfield.

    If you’ve watched that clip “multiple times” and what you think you saw was a catcher blocking the plate you are unreliable in every way. Posey twisted his upper body around to make a sweep tag, *trying* to get into the base path before Cousins reached the plate. Cousins took a course away from the plate to collide with him. (If Cousins had continued running in the direction he took towards Posey, he would have crossed the 1b line 15-20 feet away from home.)

    And this isn’t a slam on Cousins, if anybody’s going there. What he did was wrong and against the rules, but it’s undoubtably what he was trained to do, and the rules aren’t enforced at home (runner can’t interfere with a fielder making a play on the ball).

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