Radical Baseball: Catcher’s Gear For Everyone.

SATURDAY, JULY 5, 2008 Everyone should wear catcher’s gear.

OK, the outfielders probably don’t need it, especially if MLB implements my suggestions about padding the walls. However, the infielders, certainly the pitchers need this protection. ..  Infielders are taught to get in front of ground balls to block them in case of a bad hop. Bad hops happen often. Have you seen the rockets that batters blast at these unprotected players? Catcher’s gear is exactly what they need. Yes, including the face mask. If they do not start wearing this gear, pitchers will need the screen that is used in front of the pitcher during batting practice.

Jun 16, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Boston Red Sox first baseman David Ortiz (34) is tagged out by Chicago Cubs catcher Welington Castillo (53) in the first inning at Wrigley Field. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

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Parents should insist that young children playing baseball wear such protections.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/news/story?id=6624227

PHOENIX — A 13-year-old Arizona boy died in a freak accident after a baseball hit him over the heart as he tried to bunt, officials in his Little League said Friday (June 3, 2011).

“Death At The Ballpark: A Comprehensive Study of Game-Related Fatalities, 1862-2007″ by  Robert M. Gorman, David Weeks: Of the 68 ball-related deaths, 38 were from chest blows, 21 from beanings.

It’s all cultural.  It just isn’t done.  And what kind of reason is that?  A foolish one.  When I asked friend about this type of protection for his eight year old daughter who was starting to play baseball he shrugged it off.  For a girl, not even for a boy.   No wonder adult players are too timid to breach baseball protocol and properly protect themselves.

Where are the steroid zealots who grasp at any argument to explain their emotional hysteria?  They often claim to be protecting the players from themselves.  If they are so concerned about player safety then start with equipping the players.  Helmets are mandatory.  If they were not then most players probably would not wear helmets.  Pitchers should at least wear helmets but they don’t.  Make catcher’s gear mandatory.  By catcher’s gear I mean shin guards, chest protector and helmet with a face mask.

It should improve fielding.  Players would be less concerned about being injured by a batted ball and would be much more willing to get in front of hard hit balls and more inclined to watch the ball without instinctively flinching.

SUNDAY, MAY 29, 2011 Eliminate the catcher, outlaw the collisions or properly equip the fielders.

A few days ago Giant catcher Buster Posey was seriously injured when a runner smashed into him standing near home plate. I thought it was revolting, the kind of thing that is becoming unacceptable in the NFL.

MLB fans and pundits produced the usual expected drivel about this being baseball, blah, blah, blah. Also, revolting. Even Posey’s manager, Bruce Bochy, a former part time catcher for nine seasons, affirmed this with a wimpy suggestion that maybe MLB should look at it. Look at it? How about eliminating the barbarism? …

Rule 2.00 (Obstruction) …

It appears that any fielder may block any base. If that is the case, then MLB managers are dumb for not having their infielders wear catchers equipment and block all bases. In other words, if MLB managers had more imagination, there could be even more collisions.

If MLB won’t do any of my other suggestions, then at least outlaw the particular barbarism that caused the injury to Buster Posey.

And put a damn screen in front of the pitcher before one gets killed with those blasts up the middle.

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Buster Posey was injured thirteen months ago and the Major Baseball League (MBL) has done nothing.  A  rookie shortstop in a recent inter-conference game between the Yankees and Washington Nationals tried to block a Yankee who was sliding into second base.  This would be an obvious consequence if infielders started wearing shin guards.  To protect all players, blocking any base should be against the rules.  The shin guards should be to protect the player from being hit by the ball, not as a weapon against another player.

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You can follow the personal baseball blog of Kenneth Matinale here: Radical Baseball

Topics: Bruce Bochy, Buster Posey, Catchers, Giant, Major Baseball League, MBL, MLB, NFL, Parents, Pitchers, Washington Nationals, Yankees

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