Jake Marisnick, a Houston Astros player, was suspended for two Major League Baseball games on Thursday for his violent collision with Los Angeles Angels catcher Jonathan Lucroy before the All-Star break.
Marisnick said that he still felt very bad about the room and that he had had two hard days digesting to digest the situation. He also claimed to have spoken to Lucroy, a victim of a concussion and a broken nose.
"I've seen a lot of things to do and everyone obviously has their own opinion," said Marisnick before the Astros, leaders of West AL, play their first game after the break. "But I know deep in my heart that I had no intention of hurting him or getting in touch with him."
Joe Torre, chief baseball officer of the MLB, said that he had thoroughly examined the game from all angles. While acknowledging that he did not believe that Marisnick had intended to hurt Lucroy, Torre said that last Sunday's game actions had to be sanctioned because they violated the MLB's rules designed to protect the capturers of this type of situation.
Marisnick, who was also fined, appealed the suspension and was available to play the first game of the series against Texas, even though he was not in the starting lineup. He stated that he wished to have the opportunity to speak more in-depth of the room with the MLB officials.
Astros manager AJ Hinch, a former big league receiver, said he was steadfast in his defense of Marisnick and that the game was unintentional, and he was still empathetic to Lucroy.
"I do not think the suspension was necessary, I do not think it was justified, but MLB wants to keep control of the plate collisions and for all the right reasons," Hinch said. "I have not seen in my career that too many unintentional acts justify discipline, but it's a difficult task due to the extent of the injury inflicted on Jonathan Lucroy and the the nature of the ruler around the home license plate. "
Lucroy was kicked out of the field after the collision at the end of the eighth inning of a home match won by the Astros in 10 innings. Marisnick was summoned for a collision with Lucroy, and the call was confirmed after a review by the team leader.
Marisnick posted on his Twitter account then, he "took a fraction of a second at full speed" and he thought the game was going to unfold on the outside when he was heading towards the inside of the plate. He repeated this when he was talking in his locker before Thursday's match.
He said that his approach before contact with Lucroy "was trying to make my way inside, and that's why I'm so far inside."
As for her conversation with Lucroy, Marisnick said it happened after Sunday's game.
"I just sort of explained and apologized," says Marisnick, not revealing Lucroy's answer. "I'm going to let him tell his story, I do not want to put words in his mouth."