Pitchers headgear might be coming to MLB as a means of protecting pitchers from dangerous line drives. Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Brandon McCarthy suffered a serious head injury in 2012 while playing for the Oakland A’s.
McCarthy, 30, told “The Buzz” podcast that pitchers headgear could be a reality as early as 2014.
“They’re coming,” McCarthy said of the headgear. “From everything I know they’ll be available this year… they won’t be mandatory.”
Pitchers wearing headgear would be another step in trying to make MLB safer. There have been a lot of recent conversations at MLB’s Winter meetings about banning home plate collisions. Under the new rules, expected to go into effect by 2015, catchers will not be allowed to block home plate. Also, runners will not be allowed to target catchers or other fielders who may be in their path. Any breaking of the rules would result in disciplinary action.
A MLB spokesperson told Fox Sports, “One product that has passed the testing standards should be available to players for next season. We are still evaluating a number of other potential products. Our conversations with the MLBPA are ongoing. We expect this issue to continue to evolve, but we believe this is an important first step.”
There is one major setback with the headgear. It will probably look ridiculous. So even if MLB does make it available to pitchers, chances are that no one will be interested.
“It looks ridiculous and we get so used to the way things look,” said McCarthy. “Everything looks silly until it doesn’t look silly anymore.”
What do you think about pitchers headgear? Great move for making MLB safer or a gimmick that won’t be used?