Blog Entry

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

Posted on: June 4, 2011 1:41 pm
Edited on: June 4, 2011 1:45 pm
By C. Trent Rosecrans

So, I guess it's about time for the day's Buster Posey update -- I'll resist a "Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead" joke -- and this one is from Joe Torre, MLB's executive vice president of baseball operations.

Joe TorreTorre, a former catcher, says it's unlikely baseball will change any of its rules as a result of Posey's injury.

"I think it's safe to say that I don't anticipate any changes, but I'm willing to listen," Torre told

Torre said he's talked to Giants general manager Brian Sabean and manager Bruce Bochy about the play on May 25.

Torre said he didn't see anything dirty about the play and didn't believe Scott Cousins was trying to hurt Posey.

"I spoke to Brian Sabean [Friday] and Bochy [Thursday], and I told them I'd be willing to sit with them and whoever they want to invite to discuss it," Torre said. "I told them that I didn't see anything that had to be changed, but I certainly would be open to listening to them. I think they just what discussion."

Another former catcher spoke up on the play, as perhaps the best catcher ever, Johnny Bench, told the Tulsa World that Posey "put himself in such a bad position" on the play.

"I teach my kids to stay away from the plate when you don't have the ball so the runner actually sees home plate and his thought is, 'slide,'" Bench told the newspaper. "But Buster is laying in front of home plate, and it's like having a disabled car in the middle of a four-leaf highway. You're just going to get smacked. Show them the plate. You can always catch the ball and step, or step and catch the ball, as long as you've got the runner on the ground. And if you have the runner on the ground, there's less of a chance of any severe collision."

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Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: June 4, 2011 5:51 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

You Giants fans are just pissed off you don't have a real catcher, just some whiny emo punk named Poser, ahem Posey, who is out for the season. Here is what the Giants need to do. Go out there and get a real catcher who can take getting rammed and maybe he can handle the position or give you recommendations of someone who can field the position.

I recommend Ivan Rodriguez. You Giants fans know about Pudge from when J.T. Snow rammed him in the playoffs back in 2003 and Pudge took it like the real good catchers in baseball do and J.T. was called OUT. Just like the likes of Johnny Bench, Jorge Posada, Charles Johnson, Gary Carter, Carrlton Fisk, Roy Campanella, Yogi Berra, and all the other gritty tough catchers did without complaining in their days.

Since: Jan 3, 2009
Posted on: June 4, 2011 4:50 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

To the people who have elevated Scott Cousins to some kind of folk hero:

 Yeah it's part of the game. No it wasn't illegal. No Scott Cousins shouldn't be receiving threats.

 But it was totally bush. He clearly had a path to the plate. Spare me the crocodile tears of "no one is sorrier than me". He's a punk who chose the spearing of the catcher to make a name for himself. He as much as admitted it when he said that this style of play is how players like him make it to the big leagues and hopefully stay there. When he said players like him I assume he meant of limited actual talent. He saw an undersized Posey (stats are listed as 6'1" 220 but that's probably overstated) and went for it because he's the second coming of Pete Rose. Would he have chose that "style of play" if it would have been the Panda at 240 (probably understated)? Or Mauer at 6'5"? I'd love to see the lying coward make that choice against Scioscia. Nobody blocked a plate like Scioscia. I guessing with pretty high confidence that Cousins would have taken a different route to the plate.


Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: June 4, 2011 4:50 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

It's time that baseball legislates against the Pete Rose type of slide that aims at the catcher instead of the plate. You cannot launch yourself at a 2Baseman trying to break up the double play. You can slide hard, but the rolling block etc. has been banned. I will accept the runner coming in standing up as long as he doesn't leave his feet, or lead with his shoulder. But only if the catcher has blocked off the plate. If there is room to slide, you have to slide. I know it is a close call, but I think we can tell when the runner is attempting to score and when he is attempting to just bulldoze the catcher. You have to leave that up to the disretion of the umpire just as you do on plays trying to break up the DP.

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: June 4, 2011 4:29 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

People call Cousins action "a good, hard, clean baseball play." I only hope that when the Marlins next play the Giants that Cousins reaches first base, with the one out, and the next play a groundball to the second baseman.  Any bets where the relay throw to first will go?  I'm betting it will be right between the eyes- and it will also be "a good, hard, clean baseball play."  They say that payback is hell!

Since: Apr 12, 2011
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:38 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

Sunday afternoon in a game against the

Doumit was injured in a collision at home plate with Cubs baserunner

You can see

According to

Doumit, a switch-hitter, has been splitting time behind the plate this season with

Meanwhile, Doumit might become the third catcher in just a few days -- following

May 29 8:33p by

You see.... No one even knew Doumit was hurt... 3 catchers hurt and only Posey prompted the media storm.   The defense rests...

Since: Apr 12, 2011
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:29 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

It's always been part of the game" is no reason for anything. Spitballs, Steriods, & spikes in the face were once "part of the game" too. The arguement that "if it was somebody else" is bogus too
Ok Guru...  Let's not miss the point.   For you to equate spitballs and steroids with a play at the plate is insane.  The argument for it is part of the game is what makes baseball Americas game.  It's about long standing traditions and protocol.   That's what makes baseball such a great sport.  My examples of pitchers throwing chin music and the break up slide into second are exactly the same as the catcher getting rolled at the plate.   Don't get so carried away with your comparison.   Are you looking to get rid of the break up slide at 2nd also?  That's an extremely dangerous play for the guy covering the bag.  The knees, shins and ankles all take a beating during that exchange.   How can you discount the if it was somebody else argument?   Buster Posey is the hot, new young face for catchers.  He's the poster boy these days.  We don't recall all of the injuries for catchers on plays at the plate because "IT'S PART OF THE GAME".   And, you are sadly mistaken if you think the same amount of coverage would have occured for Ryan Doumit.  

Since: Feb 22, 2008
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:28 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

I don't know why people keep calling this a "collision."  Cousins left his feet and lead with a shoulder into Posey.  It was a spear.  There is a world of differnece between running into someone and delivering a blow like that.  In fact, Cousins wasn't even going for the plate at all.  He threw himself at Posey so hard that he might not have hit the plate the first time; that's why he had to crawl onto the plate after the hit.  If two of you are going for the same spot that is one thing, but the only thing Cousins was doing is trying to blow up the catcher.  It is legal, but it's really one part of the game that doesn't need to happen anymore. 

Since: Jan 1, 2011
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:25 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

Just watched the video on this.  Unless the camera angles are messing with me it sure appears as tho there was plenty of plate for the runner to go for and he made a bee line for Posey.  It appears as tho Posey was above the plate when he had the ball and the runner had to dive off the baseline to be able to barrel roll him like that.  I'd hate to be catcher in that situation.
You guys do realize that you dont really have time to think about it when your running full speed at someone right. Not to mention when you run your head is usually down, so how do you expect him to just shift where he is running in a second?

Since: Jul 22, 2008
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:07 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

I agree.  Don't change the rule.  He had room to slide around Posey but but like you said this is part of the game and one of the crosses the catchers have to bare for playing their position.  Lots of catchers have been bowled over.  Just don't necessarily like to see runners going out of their way to nail a catcher when they have other options.  Oh well.  Play ball.

Since: Sep 14, 2006
Posted on: June 4, 2011 3:05 pm

Torre: Rule change on collisions unlikely

It's always been part of the game" is no reason for anything. Spitballs, Steriods, & spikes in the face were once "part of the game" too. The arguement that "if it was somebody else" is bogus too. That  points out a problem with thinking & attitudes people have, it's part of the problem, noy part of a solution or just applying common sense. Men can feel & act macho without being brainless. Considering what we now know about concussions, preventing these types of collisions makes a lot of sense to me.

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