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Scott Cousins

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Scott Michael Jeffrey Cousins

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[edit] Biographical Information

Cousins catches.jpg

Scott Cousins came to the majors in 2010. He is a cousin of NFL player Travis Hall.

Cousins was twice all-league in high school; he also starred in basketball, setting a school record for three-pointers. His sophomore season of college, Cousins hit .309 with 7 homers and 13 steals for San Francisco. On the mound, he was 8-5 with a 2.74 ERA. He was second in the West Coast Conference in ERA behind teammate Nick Pereira. He was named All-WCC as a utility man. In 2006, the junior batted .343/.418/.500 with 21 steals in 27 tries and 53 runs in 61 games. He fell to 4-3, 4.02 on the mound as Aaron Poreda replaced Pereira as the ace. His fastball was still timed in the low 90s, though. Cousins was one steal shy of the WCC lead and was again the All-Conference utility man. For his two-way work, he was named WCC Player of the Year, beating out Poreda, Brett Hunter and Daniel Nava among others.

The Florida Marlins took the Nevada native in the third round of the 2006 amateur draft, the 95th pick overall. He signed with scout John Hughes for a $407,500 bonus. Used as an outfielder with the Jamestown Jammers, he hit only .211/.253/.256 that summer. In '07, he showed skills more like those expected for a third-round pick, batting .292/.358/.480 with 16 steals, 18 home runs and 74 RBI for the Greensboro Grasshoppers.

Cousins began 2008 with the Jupiter Hammerheads but missed two months with a right knee sprain. He hit .304/.370/.513 with 35 runs in 49 games. Promoted to the Carolina Mudcats, he batted .264/.350/.396 in 27 contests. Baseball America rated him the most exciting player in the Florida State League and as the #9 overall prospect (between Wilson Ramos and Michael Taylor). He hit .297 with 33 RBI in 25 games for the Mesa Solar Sox in the Arizona Fall League.

Scott produced at a .263/.323/.445 with the 2009 Jacksonville Suns, with 11 triples and 74 RBI. He led Marlins minor leaguers in three-baggers, a record for one of the team's AA affiliates. He also paced the Southern League in triples. In the playoffs, he hit .346 with 7 runs in 7 games as the Suns won the pennant.

In 2010, Cousins hit .285/.336/.461 with 14 homers and 74 runs for the New Orleans Zephyrs. He then was a September call-up to The Show. In his major league debut, he pinch-hit for Andrew Miller and flew out versus Scott Proctor.

On May 25, 2011, he ran into San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey on a play at home plate, breaking Posey's leg and dislocating his ankle, putting him out for the season. The Giants thought that Cousins' slide had been unecessarily violent, as Posey was not blocking the plate on the play. The injury set off a debate on how to better protect catchers in these situations, with a number of voices, such as Bruce Bochy's, being raised in favor of punishing players who deliberately run into an opponent. Giants GM Brian Sabean even went as far as calling for Cousins to be banned from baseball: "If I never hear from Cousins again or he never plays another game in the big leagues, I think we'll all be happy. ... (Cousins) chose to be a hero in my mind, and if that's his flash of fame, that's as good as it's going to get, pal. We'll have a long memory. You can't be that out-and-out overly aggressive. I'll put it as politically as I can state it: There's no love lost and there shouldn't be." For all the controversy, he only played 48 games and had but 52 at-bats on the season, hitting .135 with a single homer.

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