Farrell 'can see the merit' in outlawing violent home plate collisions

Farrell 'can see the merit' in outlawing violent home plate collisions
February 27, 2013, 8:15 pm
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SARASOTA, Fla. -- A number of high-profile managers -- including Bruce Bochy and Mike Matheny, both former catchers -- have spoken recently about having their catchers avoid violent home plate collisions, the likes of which have caused Buster Posey and others to suffer major injuries.

Farrell, while appreciating the danger, was less sure about wanting to outlaw those collisions.

"You want the aggressiveness to always remain in the game," said Farrell. "But yet at the same time, when a catcher can be open to a very severe injury, you have to listen to the comments of Mike and Bruce, catchers who have probably sustained their share of injuries and their comments probably resonate more than those who have not been back there.

"I guess I take the view of the game from a traditional standpoint and you want good, hard play as long as it's not a cheap shot. Where do you draw a line at a play at the plate? If it's a good hard slide and makes contract, is that (something that should be eliminated)? Maybe (there should be) a mandatory slide rather than a full-on collision. I can see the merit to preserving guys' health."

"The last thing anybody wants is to hurt people in the game."

Farrell said the Sox teach their catchers "how to receive that blow and still protect the plate and cover themselves. The one thing you can't guard against is the catcher receiving the throw and yet is he thinking about whether the guy's going to slide.

"There's really only one way to go about it and that's protect the plate and at the same time, cover themselves up to protect themselves."