<
>
Get ESPN+

Derby injury risk for Bumgarner is overblown

play
Mike & Mike support Bumgarner's Home Run Derby aspirations (1:33)

Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic share their excitement at the thought of Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner competing in the Home Run Derby. (1:33)

Giants manager Bruce Bochy is as competitive as anyone in baseball, longtime pitcher Jake Peavy says, and over the next month, Bochy probably will have to make peace with the idea that one of his best players is going to be at heightened risk for injury in an exhibition put on by Major League Baseball.

But Bochy will relent and permit Buster Posey to catch in the All-Star Game, in which Posey will be exposed to finger-wrecking foul tips, the face-mask-slamming backswings of hitters, thumb-bending fastballs from pitchers like Noah Syndergaard, and, of course, the concussions that catchers absorb.

And that’s when Posey is merely fielding his position. When Posey is batting, he could pull up lame running the bases, the way Hunter Pence did the other day, or maybe some pitcher will hit him, like when Matt Harvey smoked Robinson Cano on the knee in 2013.

It’s possible that when Clayton Kershaw pitches, he could get hit by a batted ball, the way Dizzy Dean did in the 1937 All-Star Game.

Sixty-eight of baseball’s best players will be selected for the All-Star Game, and along with the honor comes the possibility they will get hurt. The same dynamic will apply next spring, when dozens of players will leave their respective organizations to participate in the World Baseball Classic, and next winter, when some players will spend the offseason playing winter ball.

If Rule No. 1 of risk in sports is that you might lose, Rule 2 should be: You might get hurt.