Watching a Tigers game with family recently, it was noticed some of the players’ batting helmets have been reinforced with an additional piece that extends over the jaw area.
Historically, safety features added to any sport have sometimes been met with ridicule when first introduced, but in time they were accepted and became accustomed to.
The first baseball helmets were the 1952 innovation of Charlie Muse, a Pittsburgh Pirates executive. “The players called them minor hats (coal miners), laughed at them, called players sissies for wearing them,” Muse said.
By the 1960s it became mandatory for all teams to protect the batter from an errant pitch ball. A decade later it was extended for the base runner as well. There have been suggestions for pitchers to wear helmets, too. [Read more…]