This Day In Sports History (March 10th) — Batting Helmets
It was on this day in 1941 that the Brooklyn Dodgers announced that all of their players would start wearing batting helmets permanently in the upcoming season. It was not long after that many other teams would adopt this safety precaution as well.
General Manager Larry MacPhail was the man behind this innovation; he also introduced night games, plane travel between games, and the baseball players pension plan. The previous year a couple of MacPhail’s players were seriously injured by taking pitches to the head. As a result, Larry went to George Bennett, professor of orthopedic surgery at John Hopkins School of Medicine, and the two devised a protective helmet for players.
Nowadays, batting helmets are mandatory for all hitters. First and third base coaches are also required to wear the protective helmets. In an incident in 2007 minor league coach Mike Coolbaugh was killed by a foul ball to the head, which prompted the new rule.
Rod Woodson, NFL – Born March 10th 1965 (age 49) in Fort Wayne, Indiana
Mike Timlin, MLB – Born March 10th 1966 (age 48) in Midland, Texas
Samuel Eto’o, Soccer – Born March 10th 1981 (age 33) in Nkon, Cameroon