If there hasn't actually been an increase in the number of pitchers struck by line drives, there's at least been more awareness of player safety. To that end, MLB has officially approved the on-field use of a padded cap for pitchers. But will any actually wear it?
In just the past two seasons, we've seen heart-stopping moments and terrible injuries for Brandon McCarthy, J.A. Happ, and Alex Cobb, among others. It's frankly a wonder no players have died yet—and after minor league first-base coach Mike Coolbaugh was killed by a line drive in 2007, MLB made batting helmets mandatory for base coaches the following season.