Baseball is a game heavy on unwritten rules, but one of them may need some attention before a player is seriously injured -- or worse.
St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina became the latest casualty of the MLB's most dangerous live-action aspect this side of a 100-MPH pitch to the temple. In the bottom of the second inning in last night's contest against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Molina received a throw from outfielder Carlos Beltran to nab Josh Harrison at the plate for the final out.
It's a well-known fact that hitters should never stop on the mound when crossing back to the dugout after an out at first base -- just one of the many unwritten rules of baseball. It was also expected that Harrison would get plunked by Cardinals pitcher Jake Westbrook later in the game -- and he did. Not because Harrison's collision with Molina was a dirty play, but simply because that's just the way it is in baseball.
The "good ol' days" have been an excuse for many things that have held back baseball from matching the progressive nature of other major sports like that of the NFL. Replay expansion has been a slow and laborious process in baseball -- a sport seemingly run by purists.
But that same attitude is one of the major reasons the NFL finds itself in a world of hurt as the concussion lawsuits are flying in and the MLB may be next.
Last year it was Buster Posey's ankle disconnecting from nearly every possible spot, now Molina has a banged-up neck, shoulder, probably back, and who knows what else -- don't be surprised if he suffered some form of concussion. Perhaps it's time Major League Baseball took a step to fix a rule before major litigation strikes -- before someone gets seriously hurt.
The game's brightest stars at catcher are putting their careers and well-being on the line to make sure runners aren't safe at home. Collisions at home aren't necessary and they aren't good for the game. It's time for baseball to throw the old ways out so human beings can remain safe.
Sound Off: Do home-plate collisions belong in baseball? What about other unwritten rules of the game?
Justin Mikels is a staff writer for Operation Sports. Follow him on Twitter @long_snapper.