Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Little league pushing advances in baseball safety? Whoa. Time, ump. As a former youth sports coach, nothing was more dangerous than baseball. Not hoops, football or soccer. (Cumulative effects of concussions in football aside.) Know how fast kids are throwing now while their asshole dad in the stands yells for them to bring the *heat*? Problem is, not veryone has control to go along with the speed. The number of accidents I saw in those other three sports in 10 years as a coach combined, still don’t match the number I saw in Little League and high school levels. I’ve seen two kids under the age of 11 take fastballs to the chest, one ending up in the hospital with a cracked sternum. Other incidents where this has happened resulted in fatalities. (The ball can hit the youth player not developed enough to withstand impact like that and can catch the heart between beats, resulting in a possibly fatal abnormal heart rhythm.)
Pitchers can be just as unlucky too. While there is debate over the return speed of balls hit with aluminum vs. wood (and contributing factors like a lack of helmet and distance to the batter after the pitch), there’s no doubt in my mind that aluminum bats produced quicker hits and more velocity over wood.
Gotta say, this spot by ESPN should be pulled. It almost as bad as if Philip Morris running ads touting advances in tobacco safety now.