Changing the Game

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






With the Super Bowl now behind us, it’s time to look forward to the baseball season. The New York Yankees are looking to contend this year with a new look ball club that includes Japanese ace Masahiro Tanaka, former Boston Red Sox centerfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, former New York Met right fielder/designated hitter Carlos Beltran and catcher Brian McCann. The Mets are looking for a bounce back year and signed veteran Bartolo Colon to fill the void of injured ace Matt Harvey. They also acquired former Yankee Curtis Granderson to man centerfield.

Although both teams made upgrades, this season of baseball we’ll see changes that are positive and negative. One of the changes includes protective caps for pitchers. So often, we’ve seen pitchers get hit in the head by line drives and finally they get to protect themselves. For example, according to Mercury News, Oakland A’s pitcher Brandon McCarthy was hit in the head by a line drive in September of 2012. He had a traumatic brain injury which resulted in a seizure a year later and was out the remaining part of the season.

“I think changing the game to make it safer for players is a positive step for MLB,” says Brandon Kurz, a former captain and starting pitcher at NYIT (from 1998-2002) who’s currently the head baseball coach at St. Mary’s High School. “Glad to see they are taking the health of their players seriously, plus acting accordingly.”

The second change is no collisions at home plate which has been talked about a few years now. This change was brought about after San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey was hurt after a collision at home plate that resulted in him missing the entire 2011 season.

“In baseball a good catcher is considered indispensable,” says Kraig Binick, also a former baseball player at NYIT (in 2007) who recently played with the Long Island Ducks and is now the assistant baseball coach for Saint Joseph’s. “They are responsible for calling games, knowing their pitchers, and being able to hit and in rare cases run. Owners spending millions on these catchers don’t want to see them hurt and for the catchers safety and his money. I do agree with no collision on that aspect. However, this part of the game has been a unique exciting part of the game since it began. Baseball is the game of life; you block me from making my money I’ll run you over.”

Frank Catalanotto, who played in the major leagues for 14 seasons which he finished with the New York Mets in 2010, says differently, “The home plate collision has always been in the game and only once in a blue moon do we see someone get hurt.” Catalanotto currently teaches hitting lessons at Prospect Sports in Farmingdale. “I think we may wind up seeing more injuries by players that are unsure of how to go into home plate and try to avoid the collision. I’m not so sure that the changes will be positive changes.”

The third and most profound change is the use of instant replays. Technology has made an impact on the world and now has taken it onto the baseball field. Before this year, instant replay was used very little, but it will now be increased. At the beginning of a game, each manager will have one challenge. If the challenge is upheld, the manager will keep the challenge, but cannot have more than two for the game. The change was brought on after years of missed calls which resulted in many confrontations between managers and umpires.

 “It’s important to make sure the umpires get the right calls,” says Brandon Kurz. “It makes the game fair and more importantly accurate. No game should be decided over a bad call.”

“I like the game the way it is,” says Frank Catalanotto. “To me human error is part of the game and has been ever since the game was established. Video replay takes that away and will also make the games longer. When I was in the game, a representative from MLB would meet with us in spring training and tell us how we had to make the games quicker. They did everything possible to shorten the games because fans were getting bored with such long games. Now by adding all of this instant replay it is just going to make the game longer.”

Changes are what make the world go round, but will baseball change for the common good? Will it still be, “America’s pastime?” Will the changes anger fans? All of these questions will be answered by the end of this season. Mistakes will be made, but that is the nature of the game. You make a mistake and move on. The one aspect that will never change in baseball is a bat, ball, and glove.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Changing the Game

    Features

    Study Shows College Students Lack Financial Literacy, Postponing Financial Independence After Graduation

  • Changing the Game

    News

    Henry C. “Hank” Foley takes over as Fourth President of NYIT

  • Changing the Game

    News

    2017 NYIT Honorary Degree Recipients

  • Changing the Game

    Showcase

    Clyde Doughty and Jack Kaley inducted in ECC Hall of Fame

  • Changing the Game

    Features

    Professor Kevin Horton releases his first children’s book: Cee Jay and Bugsy

  • Changing the Game

    Features

    13 Reasons Why: The Show That Strikes the Core

  • Changing the Game

    Showcase

    The March Madness Comes to a Conclusion

  • Changing the Game

    News

    April: Autism Awareness Month

  • Changing the Game

    Features

    Back to the Rulebooks

  • Changing the Game

    News

    From Right Field to West Wing: Tom Joannou’s Journey to Washington D. C.

Changing the Game