SAN FRANCISCO -- Baseball's new video replay system is serving as a learning tool for the Giants, especially catcher Buster Posey, who gained insight during Tuesday night's 5-0 loss to Atlanta about handling plays at home plate.
Jason Heyward's success at sliding around Posey, turning what appeared to be a sure out into a run that launched Atlanta's three-run, sixth-inning rally, taught the Giants that nothing is certain. The new rules aimed at discouraging home-plate collisions that govern baserunners and catchers also are a factor. Forbidden in many cases by plowing through the catcher, runners have found novel methods -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy called them "creative" -- of hitting the dirt.
"I think you learn you can't assume it'll be an easy tag," Bochy said Wednesday, one day after Heyward tumbled around Posey. "... You realize that he's not going to slide into you and make it easy."
Posey acknowledged that he must be more "aggressive" in tagging baserunners.
A solution for catchers, Bochy said, is to "stay in an athletic position, a balanced position where you can move either way and make a move along with the runner."
The days of runners being called out just because a throw beats them to a base are over. This wasn't the case with Heyward, whose run was confirmed by video review. But just as catchers can't assume they'll be able to make a simple tag, nor can umpires assume an easy out will be made.
"With replay, you're going to see more calls overturned," Bochy predicted.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.