Posey slams threats against Cousins; Johnny Bench blames catcher for play
In a statement released Saturday by the Giants, Buster Posey expressed his appreciation for the continued support of Giants fans and others as he begins the recovery process, but condemned threats of any kind against Scott Cousins or his family. Posey had previously indicated the brutal collision could have been prevented, but added that it as a legal play.
San Francisco, CA, United States
June 5, 2011 09:13 am EDT
Sports, Baseball, Major League Baseball - National League
San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey, who has had surgery and is done for the season, released a statement Saturday seeking to distance himself from recent threats against Scott Cousins and urging everyone to “move on.”
Posey expressed his appreciation for the “continued support of Giants fans and others” as he begins the recovery process, but condemned “threats of any kind against Scott Cousins or his family.”
"As I said last week, I'm not out to vilify Scott. I appreciate that he made the effort to reach out to me on the night of the play, but I was in no physical condition to talk to anyone," Posey said in the statement as reported by the San Francisco Chronicle. "I have not been back with the team since that night, so I haven't even been aware of any other messages he's left for me.”
"We all need to move on, so it isn't necessary to have a conversation with him at this point," the 2010 NL Rookie of the Year added.
Posey had previously indicated that Cousins could have prevented the brutal collision in the 12th inning of a 7-6 loss against Florida had he slid around the Giants star catcher, but added that it was a legal play.
Meanwhile, Hall of Fame catcher Johnny Bench has put the blame on Posey, citing a mistake on the part of Giants catcher that abruptly ended his season.
According to 14-time All-Star and two-time NL MVP Bench, regarded as the best offensive and defensive catcher of the 1970s, Posey "put himself in such a bad position" before Cousins rammed into him.
Bench, 63, indicated in an interview with the Tulsa World that he teaches catchers to move off the plate before a close play to give runner the option of sliding instead of colliding.
"Buster is laying in front of home plate, and it's like having a disabled car in the middle of a four-lane highway. You're just going to get smacked," said Bench.
He added: "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 chance of any severe collision.”
On the hand, manager Bruce Bochy, a former catcher, took exception to Bench’s remarks, but did acknowledge that Posey was not well positioned in that fateful play.
"Buster wasn't in great position, I agree, because it was a short hop and he dropped down on both knees to get it," Bochy said via the Chronicle.
In the same report, Bochy also noted the preference for a catcher is to "keep the left leg up. He's still going to be vulnerable because he's trying to catch an in-between hop, the toughest play in baseball. Eventually, you go to make a sweep tag."
Posey, who was an important cog in the Giants’ World Series title run last year, was batting .284 with four homers and 21 RBI this season.
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