6.2: Chronicle Live -- Mike Matheny
One of the most popular Giants might -- dating now we're doing it. For the St. Louis Cardinals in a variety of roles including out there pre and post game show -- Greg Papa in studio in San Francisco first of all welcome to chronicle live you look great. A great -- agreement could -- OT He has been a while it has been awhile I wanna catch up with -- what you're doing but I wanna get to the quote she gave Henry -- and the chronicle. On Monday about Scott cousins -- one word that caught me was hunting meaning He was somewhat. Head money album let let's just talk about Scott cousins the Florida Marlins coming down the line a week ago tonight. Why did you say He went hunting. Well He and to me I always see did the players given to the catching him an opportunity to avoid the contact if you look at that play and I broke it down quite a few times as. As I'm still working with the coaches and and the Cardinals organization I like to show them. Plays that were done right. Plays or maybe something could've been have been done differently which I think we'll talk about with -- is there were some mechanical flaws than what happened there. But also lead you start looking at. Did they didn't did He have an opportunity to go a different direction went back and when you see my cousins completely come across -- body. A lot of things going this is an easy young player he's trying to prove himself. It's late in the game. Obviously use it was a game making play. So all of that in the adrenaline. But there's nothing wrong -- still going now the fact that He would have been safe if He goes for the played there was plenty of play being shown. And I stand by the fact that. Win when that happens to a catcher. You put a mark in the column of -- this guy went after me last time. And you don't let -- go I mean that's just part of that is really your only defenses in the I would say years ago. A lot of times your pitching staff might stand up and do something about it the game's changed a little bit in that regard. So pitchers need to defend themselves sometimes right when they get the ball the next time that particular guy comes of the play you might put a little extra hard tag on him. It's interesting because you you obviously had his play from both sides of water coming down the line of the catcher trying to block the plate the way I saw Mike was I think cousins -- -- -- how. Because the ball was gonna get there about ten feet before. Had buster made the catch and come across the plate I think He would have tagged him out I personally thought that Foster dropped the baseball because He sensed the contact coming. Drama cousins on his blind side -- -- the left any kind of brace warned if you look at it it is not even get as -- on the on the ball He actually bare hands the -- but when did you think that it had cousins taking the outside -- the one that -- gave them. He would have been able to hook slide and get in there safely and a. Hit it did look that way but there was a ball that was Bobble so I mean I love it happens so fast and make something else clear also. I know that when I laid in front of the plate. 100% I expected somebody to floundering. I really did and I believe that's a fair play so you gear your -- walking a fine line here though the whole thing comes down to. Even when I blocked the plate and I got lit up by a guy I knew next time I'm gonna give him many now I mean it is just -- it's really the only -- a catcher has. His two to put that in your book and say. Next time I'm gonna make this -- feel a little bit but. Sometimes -- I don't think -- give him an option by when you do completely taken away now there's a lot of things go into this I truly believe. That the game has kind of set up. To have problems with the young pitcher like -- You can't run over guys a Little League you can't run over him in high schooler and college buster wasn't even a catcher -- majority of those times those last couple years of Florida State. So I would say by the time this happened was because He may only been hit once or twice in his lifetime. I remember it ten years old getting cloud over twice in one inning so I mean we knew that that was something that was a skill that happened over time. In one of those things that I think fifty have to work together understand. While meet him. Like you were talking about the pressure coming down and still trying to hang on the ball and then decide when to take the place. There's a lot that goes into that so. I think the game is kind of moving toward you you're gonna see less and less this all the time but with someone -- caliber gets hurt. You have to step back and look at everything and what I saw was there was play. The guy went after them it's clean play He stayed low but. I know as a catcher and I know the Yadier Molina right now knows next time -- is on second base he's going to be completely prepared that this guy might take a -- right now. You make a great point filibuster because you never learn how to properly blocked the plate growing up in high school and college it is not allowed do you play professional baseball you grew up playing for the great bill Strahan at the University of Michigan one of the great. Played blockers in the history of the sport and you know the old school guy. I do wanna get your thoughts because listened to you talk I think you would you kind of of the opinion. That the one of the main parts of the other catcher's job is to block. Home plate but Billy Beane the Oakland a's general manager came out yesterday and told Kurt Suzuki is undersized catcher by the way He does not want him. Blocking the plate I can remember going back ten years ago Billy telling me what I worked Oakland -- games He did not want Ramon Hernandez to block the plate He wanted to keep his bat. In the lineup -- back earlier in your career might where you ever called aside at some point your career told by your manager for your GM your owner. -- laid -- flight the flight I wanna keep your bat in the lineup. Well you got to understand is as a whole different skill -- with the with the spinning guy and I was kind of guy had to do everything right to stay in the game. So for me so lay the play would probably mean they've they've bus trip for a taxi cab ride to AAA. And and I understood that I had to do all the little things right. And it ended in bust -- then Ramon. We're certainly not in that category of those guys especially with what they bring to the plate offensively. There there there are different caliber player much like what Yadier Molina is so as as I'm working with the catchers and spring training. I can almost hear Tony La Russa saying the exact same thing knowing that this is a different team here in Saint Louis and yet he's not the lineup exactly the same way. -- bruised foot she's gonna say it is a different lineup when you don't have -- so. Is that played for a different caliber of player -- busters or as a yacht isn't that important for them that's -- sacrifice themselves to us lay in front of the plate. I would say probably not I am let's -- you -- -- Eli Whiteside He talked to a player like like Mike -- you had to do everything He could to stay around as long as He could. That's an integral integral part of the game for me and it's something that I don't take lightly I know the intangibles that come with that. The respect that comes from your your coaching staff the respect that comes from your pitching staff. When you make that play and you show everybody else do what I can to keep those runs from. Crossed the plate. -- they got it was dubbed the toughest man alive when He was in Milwaukee -- remember that shot you with a blood coming out of your mouth to do what you would not come out of the game but you look so young and fit not to be playing and still. I can update me on your help because it was just about exactly five years ago Memorial Day weekend the job for play NF. Series in Florida you took a rather innocuous foul ball off your best we thought. No big deal. And effectively ended your career. And you had the post concussion syndrome for a number of years how are you right now physically Mike -- you over what went to were forced to retire from the game now. Yeah absolutely it's it's a 100% now but it took a good eighteen months and it was a it was a frustrating time for me because. You know some of the things like of the pits or got hit by Milwaukee and some other injuries that had that I was able to play through people till -- wouldn't be able to so. When this thing came along and there was no X -- there was no MRI surf cat scans that I could tell you. Hey this is where you are in the injury we need to get to do here and then -- be able to play again it was all subjective it was how did I feel size I was staying in Half Moon Bay and I drive to the field in the -- there might have -- feel that they have a right fielder than -- and I would get into the clubhouse. And and the trainers were doing their job by following up in the teammates and the coaches that they were all three of their very positive and they did you feel any better and -- You know I think I can say is I guess I need to go do something to find out if I thought OK and every time -- Jump on the treadmill or on a fight. Or I'd be even to take some swings I've realized that and no I'm not okay and but the problem was every time that I did do that I set myself back. And I kept cushion and push and which is that fine line in baseball what do I pushed that we saw this the other night with Kyle McClellan for the Cardinals tried to push through an injury next thing you know he's given up a boat motor runs. It's a fine line but you know it I think if you go about the game that way you always play it all out and you're trying grind through stuff even when you shouldn't. I think there's a there's a lot of freedom and looking back in not having a lot of regrets. He was only giant for a couple of years ago five and 06 but those of us they got to know Mike -- you know hopefully you do know what it's a great guy He is and we're all pulling for you Mike thank you so much for your time and night out. Chronicle live and I wish you and your family the very best. -- guys it was a pleasure thanks for everything is always great to work with his.
Mike Matheny joins Chronicle Live to discuss collisions at home plate.