CSS Button No Image Css3Menu.com

Baseball Prospectus home
  
  
Click here to log in Click here for forgotten password Click here to subscribe

Articles Tagged Body Armor 

Search BP Articles

All Blogs (including podcasts)

Active Columns

Authors

Article Types

No Previous Tag Entries No More Tag Entries

This is a BP Premium article. To read it, sign up for Premium today!

May 11, 2006 12:00 am

Schrodinger's Bat: Strike Zones, Trilobites, and a Vicious Cycle

0

Dan Fox

To stick with the theme, you might say that Dan's column on historic HBP rates engendered a massive retaliatory response from readers.

"If they knocked two of our guys down, I'd get four. You have to protect your hitters."
--

The rest of this article is restricted to Baseball Prospectus Subscribers.

Not a subscriber?

Click here for more information on Baseball Prospectus subscriptions or use the buttons to the right to subscribe and get access to the best baseball content on the web.


Cancel anytime.


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!


That's a 33% savings over the monthly price!

Already a subscriber? Click here and use the blue login bar to log in.

A ludicrous slippery-slope response to baseball's recent announcement that they will enforce rules limiting the wearing of protective "body armor" at the plate? Of course it is. No one wants to see batters lose their head protection, no matter how much they crowd the plate.

The move comes after previous league attempts to back hitters off the plate resulted in little change in batter behavior. MLB eliminated most equipment protecting batters' elbows, wrists, and hands in 2002, but baseball observers say many batters still stand close to home plate in an effort to make solid contact with pitches on the outside corner.

"We've seen a few broken wrists and severe elbow injuries [since the 2002 ruling]," said one unnamed MLB official, "but batters are still hanging over the plate, and they're not making enough of an effort to avoid inside pitches. We need to try new ways of making them face the consequences of getting hit."

Many pitchers welcomed the new ruling. "I don't know if we'll see a big change right away," said one American League starter on condition of anonymity, "but after the hitters see the results of a couple of accidental beanings, I'll bet they think twice about diving across the plate."

He quickly added, "Of course, nobody wants to see anyone die from getting hit in the head. Hopefully we'll just see enough to get hitters to reconsider their priorities. A fractured skull, a short coma--that sort of thing."

A ludicrous slippery-slope response to baseball's recent announcement that they will enforce rules limiting the wearing of protective "body armor" at the plate? Of course it is. No one wants to see batters lose their head protection, no matter how much they crowd the plate.

Nevertheless, it's odd that everyone seems anxious to get rid of another kind of protection for players. While nearly every injury-reducing breakthrough in baseball history--from catchers' masks to batting helmets to outfield wall padding--has met with universal praise, columnists, coaches, and even many players seem ready to throw out the injury protection of hard elbow pads and other hard arm guards.

Read the full article...

The move comes after previous league attempts to back hitters off the plate resulted in little change in batter behavior. MLB eliminated most equipment protecting batters' elbows, wrists, and hands in 2002, but baseball observers say many batters still stand close to home plate in an effort to make solid contact with pitches on the outside corner.

"We've seen a few broken wrists and severe elbow injuries [since the 2002 ruling]," said one unnamed MLB official, "but batters are still hanging over the plate, and they're not making enough of an effort to avoid inside pitches. We need to try new ways of making them face the consequences of getting hit."

Read the full article...

No Previous Tag Entries No More Tag Entries