June 3, 2011GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEOMIAMI (AP) Florida Marlins rookie Scott Cousins has been receiving death threats despite repeatedly apologizing for a collision with San Francisco Giants star Buster Posey.The collision at home plate on May 25 left Posey with a broken bone in his lower left leg and three torn ligaments in his ankle. He's had surgery and is done for the season.Giants general manager Brian Sabean criticized Cousins on his weekly radio show on KNBR this week, calling the play malicious and unnecessary. Sabean also said "if I never hear from Cousins again, or he doesn't play another day in the big leagues, I think we'll all be happy.""He chose to be a hero, in my mind," Sabean said. "If that's his flash of fame, that's as good as it's going to get, pal. We'll have a long memory."Those comments got the attention of Major League Baseball, and executive vice president of baseball operations Joe Torre spoke with Sabean on Friday. The Giants also issued a statement saying Sabean's comments were made out of frustration, and the GM was trying to reach Cousins."We intend to move beyond conversations about last week's incident and focus our attention on Buster's full recovery and on defending our World Series title," the team said in the statement.Cousins also issued a statement Friday and apologized again for the collision."I hope and believe that Mr. Sabean's comments were made in the heat of the moment and are based more on his fondness for Buster Posey than on any animosity towards me," Cousins said in the statement. "This situation is still an open wound for many, including myself. As I have stated previously, nobody outside of Buster feels worse about his injury than I do."Cousins said he's tried to contact Posey but has been unsuccessful."I do believe, however, that the play was clean and totally within the rules of the game," Cousins said. "Explaining over and over that I would never intentionally hurt another player for any reason won't change the minds of those who doubt my sincerity or intent."I have a responsibility to myself, my teammates, and my organization to play the game hard. This is what has gotten me to the big leagues, and hopefully this is what will keep me here."Giants president Larry Baer he spoke with Marlins president David Samson on Friday regarding Sabean's comments. Baer also said Sabean talked to Florida GM Larry Beinfest and tried calling Cousins himself but was unsuccessful."It's still a pretty raw emotional time for us," Baer said. "I mean, to lose (Posey) for the season, a guy who means so much to us. Having said that, we're looking forward and we're looking forward to Buster's recovery. We're certainly out of the business of talking about the incident and revisiting it other than we think it's healthy dialogue to talk about what can be done to protect the player."Posey felt Cousins could have slid around him but also said it was a legal play.Marlins outfielder Logan Morrison came to Cousins' defense during an interview Friday on SiruisXM radio, calling Sabean "wildly unprofessional" for calling out his teammate."When has he played in the big leagues? When has he played in the minor leagues?" Morrison said. "Correct me if I'm wrong, but he's never been in a situation like that. It's terrible."Why would you wish anything like that on anybody?" Morrison continued. "He's getting death threats from people. This is his hometown, San Francisco. He's worried about his family and his friends that are there. And now (Sabean) is going to make comments like that? It's ignorant, it's inappropriate and he has no idea what the hell he's talking about."Florida manager Edwin Rodriguez said before Friday's game against the Milwaukee Brewers that he doesn't have to defend his young outfielder because Cousins didn't do anything wrong."As a team we don't have anything to say," Rodriguez said. "If people want to keep talking about that, let them talk."The Giants visit the Marlins for a three-game series in August.
At Goodyear, Arizona, Joe Panik, Conor Gillaspie and Jarrett Parker homered for San Francisco. Jimmy Rollins singled and scored twice.
Giants lefty Matt Moore went 1 1/3 innings in his first start of the spring, allowing one run and one hit. He walked two and struck out three.
Cincinnati starter Tim Adleman pitched two innings, giving up four hits and two runs.
MESA, Ariz. — An unexpected opportunity came Daniel Gossett’s way Sunday, and the young right-hander took it in stride.
When the A’s adjusted their starting rotation, Kendall Graveman got bumped to Monday and Gossett learned he’d be taking the ball to start Sunday’s Cactus League home opener against the Los Angeles Angels.
“I’m here for what they need me for,” Gossett said. “So anything they need, gimme the ball.”
He spun two scoreless innings in a game Oakland lost 5-3 at Hohokam Stadium. A nice first impression for Gossett, indeed, but the truth is A’s officials were already quite familiar with him.
A second-round pick out of Clemson in 2014, Gossett impressed at three levels of the farm system in 2016, beginning the year with Single-A Stockton and finishing it with Triple-A Nashville.
This is his first big league camp, and manager Bob Melvin even mentioned Gossett as being part of the fifth starter conversation.
“He impressed everybody in the organization last year, so when talking about that fifth spot, who knows?” Melvin said before the game.
The only blemishes on Gossett’s day were the pair of walks he issued. After walking Jefrey Marte to lead off the second, he got a lift from his catcher, as Josh Phegley fired a strike to second to nail Marte trying to steal.
“A pitcher’s best friend, I guess,” Gossett said. He went 10-6 with a 2.69 ERA across 27 starts at all three levels of the minors last year, and his 151 strikeouts led the A’s farm system. Gossett’s fastball ranges anywhere from 90-95 on the gun. He throws a changeup that gets the most swings and misses, plus a slider and curve.
Grady Fuson, an A’s special assistant to the general manager, liked the adjustments he saw with Gossett over the course of last season.
“He’s a super kid, a grinder,” Fuson said over the winter. “He’s a guy that hadn’t struck many guys out and had been very hittable in the strike zone. (In 2016), he started executing to different parts of the zone that limits the hard contact.”
CAMP BATTLE: Alejandro De Aza sparked the A’s first rally in the third Sunday with a triple, then scored on Mark Canha’s double. With Jake Smolinski sidelined currently by a shoulder issue, it’s a good time for De Aza, a non-roster invitee to camp, to make his mark. The door could be open for him to make a push to make the roster as a fifth outfielder.
“He’s an interesting guy,” Melvin said of the nine-year veteran. “He knows how to play the game, he can play all three outfield spots. We’ve seen him before when he’s given us trouble, too, with the White Sox.”
Another contender for a reserve outfield spot is Jaycob Brugman, who has yet to crack the majors but is already on the 40-man roster. He singled home a run in the seventh. Like De Aza and Smolinski, Brugman can play center field, and it stands to reason the A’s will want to carry someone who can back up Rajai Davis at that position.
NOTEWORTHY: Phegley admitted to some butterflies before getting behind the plate for his first game since July, when a right knee injury wiped out the rest of his season.
But he looked good springing up to nail Marte on the second-inning steal attempt. The A’s are counting on Phegley returning to his role as the right-handed hitting platoon partner with Stephen Vogt behind the plate.
STOCK RISING: Melvin was impressed, and entertained, by the first look he got at reliever Simon Castro on Saturday against the Chicago Cubs. Castro retired Kris Bryant to strand a runner at third, the only hitter he faced. But it was what happened before the at-bat that caught Melvin’s attention.
“When he came to the mound he was pretty vocal,” Melvin noted. “He was fired up, telling the guys ‘Let’s go!’ I haven’t heard that too many times out of pitchers, let alone in spring training. So he impressed me with his eagerness to pitch.”
FAMILIAR FACES: Campy Campaneris and Blue Moon Odom each threw out ceremonial first pitches before Sunday’s exhibition home opener, which drew a smallish crowd of 4,072.