MLB has had its share of major league injuries over the past few years. Many of these injuries occurred as a result of a player colliding with a wall that was not protected. And, as you might expect, these injuries could have been prevented had the organization responsible for the facility placed field wall pads along the wall or fence. If you are considering investing in wall pads for the safety of your male and female athletes, then read these cautionary tales below. They should help you make the right decision for your players.
Fenway Park, Boston
Fenway Park’s Green 37-foot left-field can cause serious injury if you are an outfielder who has just crashed into it.
That is just what happened when Houston Astros left fielder Marwin Gonzalez hit what is known as the Green Monster while trying, and failing, to catch a drive off the plate. Gonzalez was knocked down by his collision. Gonzalez was stretched out on the warning track after hitting the wall, and he was coughing as his managers came to examine him. He suffered from some dizziness after the play, and his back and his chest hurt. Still, he remained in the game.
“I was dizzy for the rest of the inning, and it was really painful in my chest, too,” recalled Gonzalez. The left fielder banged his back, upper back, and neck. He did not maintain the same level of play after the accident, striking out in his final two at-bats on just seven pitches.
MLB is being forced to be more aware of the possibility that players suffer concussions and injuries during a game that often go ignored or unreported. Some injuries, however, are so severe that neither players nor managers can ignore them.
Case in point, Clint Frazier’s near season-ending concussion earlier in 2018.
LECOM Park, Bradenton
Yankees outfielder Clint Frazier missed several days of baseball camp due to a concussion caused by a leaping, tumbling catch in a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates
Frazier hit the back of his head against a chain-link fence that covers the scoreboard. Frazier initially did not complain about any symptoms, playing 4 1/2 innings after the accident, but said he noticed a cloudy sensation later that day.
"I've never had a concussion. I felt fine," Frazier said. "But once I sat down and stuff really started to settle in, I guess my adrenaline kind of excited my body. I still have a slight headache, so I've got to get rid of that."
Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles
Bryce Harper encountered a frightening, face-first collision with the right-field fence that left him bloodied, lying on the ground and disoriented.
Leading off the fifth inning, the batter hit a line drive over Harper’s head in right field. Harper sprinted after the ball looking over his left shoulder. As the ball crashed off the wall, Harper turned, apparently unaware of his proximity to the fence. He smashed face-first into it like he never saw it coming.
Harper’s head snapped back, and his hat came flying off his head like a piece of ski equipment after a crash. He crumpled to the warning track dirt. Harper received 11 stitches under his chin. He also bruised his neck and knee.
An Ounce of Prevention…
Yes, even in the world of collegiate and professional sports, some organizations that train and play some of the finest athletes in the world still fail to recognize the importance of protecting these men and women from sports that are already inherently rugged by nature. A simple investment such as wall padding can prevent injuries, fatalities, lawsuits, high medical costs, and career-ending moments that affect the lives of not just players, but everyone associated with the injuries they suffer from.
Wall Padding for Your Baseball Stadium
As an athletic facility owner, manager, or coach, the safety of your players should be your primary concern everytime they take the field. So, if you are looking for a practical, safe, and affordable way to prevent injuries this season, contact Fieldwallpads.com to discuss your padding options.
To find out more about our products or schedule a consultation, call us at 800-257-6406. You can also message us on our contact page.