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Sabean needs to pipe down

Chris Ruddick,
MLB Editor


Rounding Third Logo Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - I've held off chiming in on this whole Buster Posey blocking the plate issue for a number of reasons, but mostly because while it's a shame that someone was injured, it is a part of the game and has been forever.

I'm sure nobody felt worse than Florida outfielder Scott Cousins after the dustup at home plate in San Francisco last Wednesday that left Posey with a broken left leg, strained ankle ligaments and out for the remainder of the season.

As gruesome as it may have looked and eventually the results turned out to be, it was a clean play. And even though there was no reason for him to do so, Cousins sought out Posey and apologized, only to be rebuffed later. In fact, the Giants have continued to add fuel to the fire all along by intimating that it was a dirty play.

Cousins, whose family lives in San Francisco, has also received death threats over the play, according to his agent. Stay classy Giants fans.


Brian Sabean was completely out of line and made an already played-out situation worse.
The bottom line is, it happens, like it did back in the 2003 National League Division Series when San Francisco's J.T. Snow barreled into Marlins catcher Ivan Rodriguez and on other countless occasion. Luckily, Rodriguez wasn't hurt and held on for the out, but that play must have slipped San Francisco general manager Brian Sabean's mind on Thursday when he continued to pulverize this dead horse with comments that will likely lead to some sort of suspension.

"If I never hear from (Scott) Cousins again or he never plays another game in the big leagues, I think we'll all be happy. He chose to be a hero in my mind, and if that's his flash of fame, that's as good as it's going to get, pal," Sabean told San Francisco-based KNBR. "We'll have a long memory. Believe me, we've talked to (Mike) Matheny about how this game works. You can't be that out-and-out overly aggressive. I'll put it as politically as I can state it: There's no love lost and there shouldn't be."

Cousins' agent Matt Sosnick responded to the absurd tirade.

"What Cousins did was not malicious," Sosnick told the San Jose Mercury News. "A statement that anyone makes implying that he did something on purpose to be hurtful or malicious to Posey is untrue. Those people are misinformed. You can't determine on a replay if there was a sliding lane for him to get into. It's impossible.

"I'd say Brian's opinion is in the vast minority in baseball. I can understand the disappointment that Posey is out. I'm disappointed. My family is disappointed and I don't even represent him. I can just tell you that if you know Scott Cousins, you know it was certainly not intentional."

Why there was such an uproar over this I'll never know. I don't remember hearing a peep from the Cleveland Indians last year when their prized prospect Carlos Santana was lost for the year after getting run over by Boston's Ryan Kalish in an equally ugly collision?

Same situation: Young rising star taken out with a clean play at the plate by a borderline big leaguer. Yet nobody uttered a word.

Some are calling for a rule change to protect catchers. Are you kidding me? What if it was the almighty Derek Jeter who was the one running Posey down? Would this even be a discussion right now?

In this day and age where everyone seems to be coddled, I'm sure some sort of rule amendment will be put on the table. Hopefully common sense prevails, though. Some teams have actually already advised their catchers to avoid such hits, as Oakland general manager Billy Beane admitted to telling Kurt Suzuki to stay away from such incidents.

Sabean was completely out of line and made an already played-out situation worse. I can't remember an executive from one team speaking the way he did about a player from another team. He should have to be held accountable for his actions.

This just happened to be a freak accident and people need to realize that. Sabean is too smart of a general manager not to know that. He is embarrassing himself here with these comments.

For those wondering the Marlins and Giants don't play again until August 12-14 in Florida.

Comments? Criticism? Applause? Contact Chris Ruddick at cruddick@sportsnetwork.com.

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