In an effort to make the game safer, baseball will have a dozen pitchers try out a new padded hat this week.
Willie Weinbaum of ESPN reports that Major League Baseball has examined caps from Unequal Technologies containing “CRT” padding. After some modifications and testing MLB is sending these caps to pitchers for their thoughts.
The padding for the caps weigh 4.3 ounces and is one eighth-of-an-inch thick.
Other companies are also in discussions with MLB about hats for pitchers that would protect them in the event of a line drive.
One event that raised awareness to the safety of pitchers happened in September. It was then that a line drive off the bat of Los Angeles Angels infielder Erick Aybar struck Brandon McCarthy (then with the Oakland A's) in the right side of the head. McCarthy suffered a brain contusion and skull fracture but is expected to be ready for the start of spring training.