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San Francisco Giants Spring Training 2012: Buster Posey Advised Not To Block Plate

Buster Posey should be on his way back into the lives of San Francisco Giants fans very soon. But will he be as feared as he once was?

It's looking like Posey will be hamstrung in ways that don't have to do with his overall physical health. ESPN filed this report from spring training.

"I'll take this out of Buster's hands," Bochy told reporters Sunday as the Giants opened spring training in Scottsdale, Ariz. "As a manager, that's my job. I certainly don't want people to think he's backing off on his own. It's something we'll work on with him this spring."

Bochy, a former major league catcher himself, explained there are ways to make the tag at home plate without putting your body in harm's way.

"I've already talked to Buster about this. There are ways to make the tag without putting yourself in jeopardy,'' Bochy said, according to USA Today. "I don't want him to block the plate right now."

You have to imagine such a decision would be tough for Posey to follow at all times. A catcher's first instinct when a player is coming up to tag home is to block the plate. It's what makes a catcher a fierce adversary in the trenches, someone who really makes you think twice about making that plunge for home. Could this sort of decision hamper the Giants fielding defense and make it easier to score runs on them when hitters reach base?

On the flip side, having Posey out for an entire season and having to deal with long periods of Eli Whiteside and Chris Stewart handling catching duties is probably even less optimal. Keeping Posey healthy overrides all else.

To discuss Posey, check out our SB Nation site dedicated to all things Giants, McCovey Chronicles.