Should baseball players wear helmets?

by LxLabrosse on November 13, 2014 - 10:04am

<p>I'd like to talk about one of the major controversial topics in baseball. My topic is: «Should baseball pitchers wear helmets?» Personally, I think that pitchers wearing is the right idea, but then again I don't think I would. It's hard to give a clear reason why, but I mean I've been pitching without a helmet for over 13 years, and it would feel extremely weird to suddenly change that habit. I'm prettty sure I'd feel very uncomfortable pitching that way. Then again, getting beamed in the by a baseball hit in your direction at 95mph does sound dangerous, and if that were to happen, I would indeed want to have a helmet on. Even though it's rare, baseballs hit to pitchers head happen once in a while, and they're always very&nbsp;scary moments. Obviously, serious brain, skull and face damage can be done and the effects can be devastating on&nbsp;both the short term and long term. I feel like this rule about wearing helmets is going to change when someone gets hit, and sadly, actually dies. Because right now, every pitcher knows about the danger but we don't actually think it's gonna happen. I read a very interesting article about this topic (link will be below) in which they sort of compare the situation of pitchers wearing a helmet, with the mandatory rule that base coaches need to wear a helmet after the tragic death of Mike Coolbaugh, who was killed after by getting hit by a line-drive while coaching at first base. The policy that baseball coaches needed to wear helmets was applied shortly after,&nbsp;and this article thinks it's going to be same thing for baseball pitchers. I also watched a video in which they the first major league pitcher ever to wear a new designed cap that makes it more protectice, and the commentators of the game comment for a really long time about the pros and cons of this new cap. Once again, the main pro is that it's protectice and it's a good step forward towards player safety, but the main con is that it looks really weird and it goes out of the baseball tradition. I must admit that I really agree with the fact it looks weird, and I, unfortunately, wouldn't be ready to wear it, because I fear it would change the way I pitch.</p>

Article: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1386032-should-mlb-force-pitchers-to-...

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zp2vZaUybbM

Comments

I understand your point. Some pitchers have their little ‘’ritual’’ before they throw the ball. Though I do not think they want to end their career because of those little rituals. I must admit that sport isn’t my field of expertise. Hockey player used to play without wearing any protective gears. Unfortunate incident had to happen before they decided to make helmet mandatory. I believe it would be safer to make pitcher wear helmet. Obviously it would take times for old player to get used to it but at least it would keep them from brutally end their career.

I was coincidentally just thinking about this issue and I found your post very interesting. I agree with you that increasing safety for a pitcher is extremely important in baseball. As you would know by playing the position, pitchers are not in the best position to defend themselves after a pitch but they are in the most vulnerable position. The only issue that I would see with a pitcher wearing a helmet is that if there is a cage, it would obstruct the vision of for the pitcher. If the MLB could come up with a solution to this problem, then that would be the way to go. Another thing that I agree with you on is that the rule for a helmet will not be mandatory until someone dies. During my research, I found that “over 86% of head and facial injuries occur while a player is on defense” (Baseball Injuries). I also found out that “baseball is the 3rd greatest contributor to head injury deaths among high school and collegiate athletes” (Baseball Injuries). With these statistics, it is tough to see why the rule for helmets would not be mandatory. Batters have to wear helmets but if you think about it, the pitchers are the same distance as the batter and in a more vulnerable position but without a helmet. When the ball comes off the bat, it travels most of the time at the same speed or even faster than the pitch. Pitchers all have their own routines and they never tinker with them. I believe that the hardest part of implementing this rule will be getting the players in danger to agree to changing their routines in order to protect themselves (Gregory). The issue is whether the league will enforce the rule to protect the players or if they will risk possible death.

Works Cited
“Baseball Injuries.” SportMedBC. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 March 2015.
Gregory, Sean. “Why Pitchers Won’t Be Wearing Helmets, Even After Latest Scare.” Time. N.p., 9 May 2013. Web. 15 March 2015.