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Two MLB catchers not happy with new anti-collision rule

  • David Whitlock

Player safety is at the forefront of all major sports these days, with helmet enhancements, improvements to pitchers hats, and more prevalent, rules in place to prevent unnecessary collisions.  But what if the collision is necessary to block home plate?  That’s what Dioner Navarro asks, as he is not a fan (at least yet) of the new major league rule to eliminate home plate collisions.  ESPN Senior writer Jayson Stark reports that the Toronto Blue Jays backstop isn’t sure the new rule is a good thing:

When the conversation turned to the new rule, which is expected to be made official shortly, Navarro replied, succinctly: “I don’t care. We’re still going to get crushed.”  Asked why he felt that way, despite a rule that is specifically intended to prevent catchers from getting crushed, Navarro said: “Because it’s been like that for over 100 years.”

Navarro knows the dangers, as he was carted off the field after a violent collision with Philadelphia Phillies 2B Chase Utley.

Navarro is a collision veteran, but still doesn't want to bad Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Navarro has had his clock cleaned before, but still doesn’t want to ban collisions
Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

His teammate (backup Erik Kratz with all of 111 career games at catcher) was more vocal in his objection (via Stark):

“If you’re a guy who wants to stay in there and save a run, why can’t you?” Kratz asked. “Why would they take that advantage away from somebody who’s willing to get hurt?  Look, I get it, I get why they’re doing this. I’ve been fortunate. I’ve never had a bad injury … If I’d lost a season because of this, I’d probably be all for it. But I haven’t experienced that.”

It might be worthwhile to note that Kratz goes about 6’4″ and 255 pounds.  I wouldn’t be afraid of contact, either.  Overall it seems that this rule has been a long time coming (note, it’s not finalized yet, but widely considered to be a done deal).  It never made sense to me why home plate encouraged collisions while other bases it was forbidden.  In the end, this is a good deal, catchers will probably appreciate it in the long run, with more games played, longer careers, and fewer lingering injuries after retirement.

– David Whitlock

Related Article:
Ian Kinsler Needs Stitches On A Homeplate Collision

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David Whitlock

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David (a.k.a. Longhorndave or lhd_on_sports) joined the staff late in the 2012 season and moved to Site Manager in early 2013. A lifelong Houston Astros fan (and mini-season ticket holder for 9 years) he attends 20+ games per year. A statistics freak, David still keeps score the "old fashioned way" on occasion (and has kept manual score of World Series games since 1986 and retains the sheets). He was a featured guest weekly on the Phil Naessens Show. He is also a Texas Longhorns alumnus and huge football and baseball fan of his alma mater. When he isn't watching or writing about baseball, he works as a contractor at NASA Johnson Space Center. He lives by the mantra "a bad day at the ballpark is better than a good day anywhere else."

One Response to Two MLB catchers not happy with new anti-collision rule

  • So who held a gun to any of their heads and made em start playing professionally?Its a free country for now and they are at will to go out and get em an Obama 10 dollar an hour minimum wage job or they could just shut their mouth and do their job!Everybody wants to bitch rather than appreciate the opportunities in fron of em!

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