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Giants lose Posey for rest of season

Associated Press / May 27, 2011

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Buster Posey was carted through a tunnel at AT&T Park in San Francisco yesterday, a makeshift cast covering his left ankle and no emotion on his face.

Not exactly the exit the cornerstone of the World Series champion Giants wanted this season.

A night after Florida’s Scott Cousins crashed into him at home plate, San Francisco’s star catcher was put on the disabled list because of a fractured bone in his lower left leg and three torn ligaments in his ankle, likely ending his season and putting a major dent in the Giants’ chances of repeating.

“You just don’t replace a guy like Buster Posey,’’ said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, a former catcher who was so stricken by the news he called on Major League Baseball to review rule changes for collisions at the plate.

An MRI confirmed Posey had a fractured left fibula and three torn ligaments in his left ankle, Giants trainer Dave Groeschner said. Posey will seek a specialist to perform surgery.

As word spread throughout the Giants clubhouse, players began to come to grips with what Posey’s injury meant.

The normally blaring speakers near bearded closer Brian Wilson’s locker were uncharacteristically silent. Televisions were turned off. No one was playing dominoes or card games.

Hard to imagine a more important position player than Posey to replace.

Posey has been San Francisco’s cleanup hitter, a team leader in the clubhouse, and key cog behind the plate for one of baseball’s best rotations. The reigning NL Rookie of the Year was batting .284 with four home runs and 21 RBIs, just finding his groove in the midst of a 13-game hitting streak to move the Giants into first place in the NL West.

Eli Whiteside will be Posey’s immediate replacement. The team also put infielder Mike Fontenot (left groin strain) and utilityman Darren Ford (left ankle sprain) on the 15-day DL. Slugger Brandon Belt and catcher Chris Stewart were recalled from Triple A Fresno, and infielder Brandon Crawford was called up from Single A San Jose.

The costly play started when the Marlins’ Emilio Bonifacio hit a shallow fly ball to right-center off Guillermo Mota for the second out in the 12th inning. Cousins tagged from third base on the sacrifice fly, beating the throw from Nate Schierholtz and lowering his shoulder to slam into Posey for a clean hit on the catcher. Cousins was safe as Posey never could quite corral the ball, giving Florida a 7-6 victory.

Mets sell share The cash-strapped owners of the Mets agreed to sell a minority share of the team to hedge fund manager David Einhorn for $200 million. The influx of money would help pay debts and cover operating expenses while allowing Fred and Jeff Wilpon and Saul Katz to retain control of the team, which has been damaged by the Bernard Madoff scandal.

It was not clear how much of the team Einhorn will own. He emphasized his stake was a minority one and that he wouldn’t oversee the team’s payroll or budget.

The deal is expected to be completed next month. Major League Baseball must give its approval.

Buckner debuts Bill Buckner made his managerial debut for the Brockton Rox, who opened the Can-Am League season with a 3-1 win over the Worcester Tornadoes at Campanelli Stadium.

“We expect to win,’’ said Buckner, the former Red Sox first baseman, before the game. “I like what I’ve seen so far. We’ve got some guys that can play.’’

Rox catcher Chris Grossman hit a solo home run in the second inning and first baseman Melvin Falu went 3 for 4 with two RBIs.

Lowe off the hook DUI and reckless driving charges were dismissed against Braves pitcher Derek Lowe for lack of evidence. One of Lowe’s attorneys, Cory Yager, said police video following the April 28 arrest showed Lowe “did remarkably well’’ in his field sobriety tests after declining a breath test. Lowe did not contest a traffic violation for making an improper lane change . . . In a move retroactive to May 20, the Angels placed infielder Howie Kendrick on the 15-day DL with right hamstring tightness. The Angels also signed 35-year-old slugger Russell Branyan . . . Authorities in Denver said a 27-year-old man, identified as Robert Seamans of Pueblo, Colo., died after he fell while sliding down a stair railing at Coors Field during a game Tuesday. Police said Seamans fell about 20 feet onto concrete, striking his head.

Steve Silva of the Globe staff contributed to this report.

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