The first baseman seemed optimistic in an interview with 95.7 the Game, and he also told a horrific story.
I am the type of baseball fan who gets pretty invested in the guys who play the game and it’s pretty safe to say that there’s no ballplayer I’m more invested in than Brandon Belt. It’s not been a good season for BB9. First he got hit by a pitch that broke his hand and he missed eight weeks. I happened to be at his first game back and the next day, he hit a homer and I cheered super hard because yay Brandon was back. Then he got hit in the face with a baseball two weeks later. He missed two weeks with a concussion and again, I happened to be at his first game back and the next day, he hit a homer and I cheered super hard because yay Brandon was back. But, a week later, he was back on the DL because of concussion symptoms that just wouldn’t go away. Broken hands heal, he was back in the exact amount of time that was predicted. But hurt noggins, they’re weird and unpredictable. And it was a little harder to enjoy baseball knowing that Brandon wasn’t getting any better and might not be able to play again for a long time.
So, shorter version, I was just really happy to hear this interview. He sounds upbeat and optimistic, it sounds like going to see the specialist (which had seemed so ominous to us at first) was great as far as understanding what was going on and figuring out some ways to make it better and even though he still isn’t quite right, there’s a timetable and a plan and I mean, his main symptom is vision related yet he is driving a car while doing this interview.
Still sending extra good vibes to his noggin, so that he can get back to being Brandon. Sitting around waiting to be better is probably driving him nuts. If he is well enough to come back this season, that would be fantastic and if it takes a little longer, the most important thing is that he get well.
Every time the new catcher collision rule changes a play in a baseball game, it is a thing. I am on board with this rule. Many fans of baseball hate this rule. It’s a sign that baseball has become “soft,” that the players are not “men.” In some way, it “ruins the integrity of the game” to assure that a catcher holding still is not run into by another full grown man at full speed with the intention of making the catcher fall down with enough force that he loses the baseball he is holding. This is a huge part of baseball, to them, being able to do this. It doesn’t matter that catchers have been left concussed, knocked out or severely injured from such collisions. Catchers should be manly men that are men and be willing to sacrifice their bodies and their careers for the run that might score in these situations.
From time to time, this catcher collision rule is applied in a way that it was today, in a play where had the rule not existed, the runner easily would have been tagged out. There is room for clarity in this rule but until that clarity comes, it’s still a rule. Ballplayers know the rules of the game they play. They are aware of the circumstances surrounding a specific play prior to the play being made. If a catcher sees that a play at home plate is going to be made, he knows that if he blocks the plate, the runner will be safe, no matter if he tags him. If the runner is still a distance from the plate, that allows the catcher even MORE time to assure that he is leaving a clear path for the runner. Not giving way to the runner so that he will undoubtedly score, but allowing him to come into the plate at any force he chooses without crashing violently into the catcher’s body, whether that be intentional or unintentional. Many fans dislike the rule because they feel it allows a runner that likely might not have scored to score but if that is the case, that’s on the catcher. Not on the rule and not on the umpires.
I can admit I would probably not feel as passionate about this rule if I was not a fan of Buster Posey but here’s the thing about Buster Posey’s direct association with this rule. He’s considered weak. He’s called “Buster Pussy.” There are fans of baseball who consider the rule to be in existence because Buster Posey needs to protected from another collision. I watch every Giants game and if there’s one thing Buster Posey is not, it’s weak. I watch him take foul tips off his mask, foul balls to the throat, dings to every part of his body. That is part of being a catcher and Buster never complains, rarely even shows discomfort. He doesn’t let it affect any other aspect of his game. But aside from that, the dude came back from having severe injuries to have a season that named him Most Valuable Player in the entire National League. He started the All-Star Game that year. His team won the World Series that year. Can you even begin to imagine the amount of strength and determination it takes to go from having a limb broken to pieces to doing that, in less than a calendar year? I mean, seriously. That is a sign of dedication to a sport, to a team, to yourself and your goals way beyond being willing to stand in front of a pentagon on a baseball field and let a man plow into you at full force for no reason other than to score a single run in a single baseball game.
Today, White Sox broadcaster Hawk Harrelson was frustrated that the team that he calls games for was on the losing end of this call. The call led to a huge inning against his team and as more and more runs scored, he announced that soon, catchers would be wearing skirts. The weaklings behind the plate would be women! Because real men are cool with being a part of a violent collision and women are weak and demand things like personal safety. Well, Hawk, I hope that catchers DO wear skirts because as a woman baseball fan, that’d really up my enjoyment of the game and guess what? It certainly wouldn’t make them less of a baseball player.