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MLB pitchers might try safety hat liners next year

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 3, 2012 at 3:34 pm •  Published: December 3, 2012

Major league general managers discussed the issue during their meetings last month in California. Players' union chief Michael Weiner said there have been preliminary talks with MLB, and said the sides usually come together on safety concerns.

Many youth leagues mandate that pitchers wear helmets. Getting major league pitchers to try something may take time — finding the right comfort, fit and feel isn't easy.

"We might roll out something and have to tweak it a few times," Halem said.

Hall of Fame pitcher Phil Niekro pitched against sluggers Willie Mays, Johnny Bench and Willie Stargell for years, and wishes there had been a similar product in his days.

"You wonder how guys don't get hit in the head more often," he said Monday. "That ball coming back at you, a lot of times you have no chance."

"I don't see how pitchers would like wearing something like that," he said. "If they make it a rule, maybe they'll have to. But I would guess that after some experimenting, they'll figure it out."