Report: MLB's Torre to call Sabean on Cousins


Report: MLB's Torre to call Sabean on Cousins


Giants GM Brian Sabean reportedly will be contacted by Joe Torre, Major League Baseball's executive vice president of baseball operations, regarding comments he made Thursday about Marlins outfielder Scott Cousins.

ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted the following shortly before 9 a.m. Friday:

Source: Joe Torre, who oversees on-field operations for MLB, will call Brian Sabean regarding comments made about the Marlins'Scott Cousins.

Cousins collided with Buster Posey on May 25, with Posey sustaining a broken bone in his left leg and torn ligaments in his ankle.

The National League Rookie of the Year is out for the season after undergoing surgery on Sunday.

Sabean made his comments on KNBR radio. Here is a sampling of his remarks:

On the fact that Buster doesn't think he'll call Cousins back:
"Buster went through a tremendous experience. Maybe more so mentally than physically and he's going through a hell of a time physically with phantom pain, trying to get the pain under control. So there's a lot involved here and I don't blame him for not calling Cousins back. Why not be hard-nosed? If I never hear from Cousins again or he never plays a day in the big leagues I think we'll all be happy."

What he thinks now that some time has passed:
"After we step back and take the emotion out of it I think we're all in relative agreement that it was an avoidable situation, that's what's sad. I don't have anything against Scott Cousins, the player's mindset or even his relative explanation thereafter. The facts of the matter are it was not a blocking-the-plate situation. Buster Posey did not have the ball. The photo evidence shows Cousins, instead of taking a path to the plate, which is your job to try to score, he has his mind made up that he was going to have contact with the catcher. His right shoulder went into Buster's right shoulder which meant he veered left. If you don't call it malicious, it was unnecessary and therein lies why baseball has to look into this. These guys have to be protected."

On the play itself, and the concern about plate collisions:
"I want to make two points: One, Buster was told in spring training by (manager Bruce Bochy) not to block the plate. Two, in no way shape or form was he blocking the plate. He was just reacting to the throw and trying to get back and make a tag. Unfortunate, it's like one of those things that happens to your family. Until it happens to you and it hits home maybe it's not as real as what we're going through. I know that Boch talked to Joe Torre today and it least he's going to take some things under advisement and see what they can come up with. I don't know what the results will be."

On his long-term view of the situation:
"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. We'll have a long memory. Believe me, we've talked to (former catcher 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."

Kings' Cousins: 'Only goal this season' is to make playoffs

Kings' Cousins: 'Only goal this season' is to make playoffs

With their 109-104 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Monday night, the Sacramento Kings sit 10 games under .500 at 17-27. In almost any other season, that would mean that they were dead in the water in the Western Conference playoff race. But this it the 2016-17 season where anything is possible at the bottom.

Following Sacramento’s win at the Palace at Auburn Hills, DeMarcus Cousins was asked about the playoff picture.

“It’s my only goal this season,” Cousins told reporters following the game. “My only goal.” 

When pushed on the subject, he gave a more complete answer.

“Oh man, it’s eating me alive - every loss or every time another team wins that’s battling for the eighth spot, it’s eating me alive,” Cousins added. “Our only goal is to be in the playoffs this season.”

The Kings snapped a five-game losing streak with the win over the Pistons and they came into the evening just 2-10 over their previous 12 games. 

Once they get through their current eight game road trip, they spend the entire month of February in the Pacific time zone and play 11 over their next 13 games at Golden 1 Center.  

“The one thing I can give credit to this team about is us staying together and being a positive locker room through the ups and downs,” Cousins said. “I’m still confident and I still believe we’re going to make that push for the playoffs.”

Despite the rough patch, the Kings remain just a game and a half out of the eighth spot in the Western Conference standings. No one is running away with that last playoff spot, at least not yet.


Lawson, bench unit spark Kings' much-needed win over Pistons

Lawson, bench unit spark Kings' much-needed win over Pistons

Everyone must contribute. With Rudy Gay gone for the season, Sacramento needs a team effort each night out if they are going to have a chance of turning things around. Balancing the roster on the fly is never easy, but it’s the hand that the Kings were dealt when their second leading scorer tore his Achilles last week.

Needing a win in the worst way, the Kings walked into the Palace at Auburn Hills and came away with a huge 109-104 victory. Demarcus Cousins put up numbers, but it was the supporting cast that found a way to rise to the occasion and snap the team’s five-game losing streak.

“We’re going to need everybody on this team,” Cousins told reporters following the game. “At some point, everyone on the bench is going to win a game for us. Tonight, it was Ty (Lawson), it was Willie (Cauley-Stein) and it was Malachi (Richardson).”

Lawson was a magician with the ball. He entered the game with the Kings down just one with 3:36 remaining in the first quarter, but the Pistons caught fire around that time and pushed the lead to 11 with 20 seconds remaining in the quarter.

It looked like Sacramento might fall behind big once again, but then Lawson and the bench unit took over.

“Ty Lawson, Malachi Richardson and Willie Cauley-Stein had a great energy when we were down 11 in the first half,” Joerger told reporters. “Obviously, probably the best Willie’s played all year. Same for Malachi. He got some run, he got a little burn in the second half, felt pretty good.”

Powered by Lawson, the offense instantly opened up in the second quarter as the Kings tracked down the Pistons on their home floor. Sacramento outscored Detroit 37-24 in the frame to take a three point lead into the intermission. Lawson posted nine points and handed out four assists in the quarter.

“When our offense gets sticky, he’s able to create shots for guys by getting kickouts and getting in the lane,” Joerger said.

The 5-foot-11 point guard didn’t let up in the second half, finishing the night with 19 points and six assists in 23 minutes of action.  

“Chico just goes and plays, man, that’s Chico,” Cousins said of Lawson. “If there’s anyone with a green light to just go and play, it’s him. We love what he does with this team. He’s a spark off the bench for us. He gets us going when there’s a slump. We love the little guy.”

Lawson has become a catalyst off the bench for coach Jeorger. The 29-year-old speedster signed a one-year deal with the Kings late in the offseason and he’s quickly found his niche with the team.

“You play with Ty, you can’t help by want to run, because he will pitch it to you and that’s the best motivation - everybody wants to score,” said Joerger.

Cousins and Lawson didn’t do it alone. Cauley-Stein had one of his games of the season, finishing the night with 12 points and five rebounds. Darren Collison added 12 points, Garrett Temple chipped in 11 points and veteran Matt Barnes added 10 points and eight rebounds.  

“It’s a big, bounce back win,” Cousins said. “We were kind of heartbroken about the last lost. We felt we did everything needed to pull a win and it just didn’t go that way for us. We kind of showed our character and showed we could overcome some type of adversity with the win tonight.”

The Kings are back at it on Wednesday in Cleveland when they hit game four of their season-long eight-game road trip. They’ll face LeBron James and the championship Cavs for the second time this month.  

“It’s huge, we had a little stretch where we lost like eight of nine games, something like that,” Lawson told CSN’s Kayte Christensen following the game. “Getting a win going into Cleveland, it makes us feel a little bit better. Now we’ve got to go in and get a tough one.”

A tough one indeed. Cleveland sits at 31-13 on the season, but they are coming off back-to-back losses against the Spurs and Pelicans.