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DWI policy, maple bats, new helmets all part of the new collective bargaining agreement

Nov 22, 2011, 5:04 PM EDT

David Wright helmet

More health and safety stuff from the new collective bargaining agreement.  First, let’s call this new part the “2011 DUI-fest Memorial Contract Provision”:

The parties agreed on a program of mandatory evaluation by a trained professional for Players who are suspected of an alcohol use problem (including Players who are arrested for DWI or other crimes involving alcohol), and for players who are arrested for crimes involving the use of force or violence.

No fines or suspensions or anything yet, but as we talked about when all of those dudes were getting arrested on suspicion of DUI this past year, it’s not as easy to do that as you might think. Ask Derek Lowe, who was arrested, tarred, feathered and … then had all charges dropped against him.

Next up: maple bats:

The parties agreed that no new players will be permitted to use a low density maple bat during the term of the agreement.

So, if you use one now, you’re cool. You’ve been grandfathered into things and you can impale someone completely within your rights as a union member.  New people, nope.  Finally, head safety:

By 2013, all Major League players will wear a new batting helmet developed by Rawlings that protects against pitches thrown at 100 miles per hour. The new version of the helmet is  significantly less “bulky” than prior versions of the more protective helmet.

We remember David Wright and Francisco Cervelli wearing these things. Glad to hear they’re less bulky, but really, if pink-painted pumpkin rinds were proved to protect against concussions, everyone should be on board with it.

  1. fearlessleader - Nov 22, 2011 at 5:18 PM

    The New York Daily News (yeah, I know) is reporting that the new agreement also adds sexual orientation to its non-discrimination policy, along with race, color, religion, and nationality. A small and largely symbolic step, of course, but if this is true, it’s great to see MLB following the NFL’s lead and making pro sports incrementally safer for gay people.

    See? It gets better!

  2. Utley's Hair - Nov 22, 2011 at 6:00 PM

    The Hawaiian named Victorino also wore the helmet (http://www.thefightins.com/meechone/shane-victorino-looks-fantastic-in-the-new-helmet/)—of course, that was before Kazoo made them fashionable in Bedrock, that is.

  3. randomdigits - Nov 22, 2011 at 7:15 PM

    I bet if Larussa had known the new DUI policies were just for players he wouldn’t have retired.

    • fearlessleader - Nov 22, 2011 at 9:06 PM

      Wow! So original and hilarious! Blargh.

  4. illcomm - Nov 22, 2011 at 7:26 PM

    good article Craig.

  5. bertilfox - Nov 22, 2011 at 8:00 PM

    It is sad that hitters will not be forced to resemble The Great Gazoo. It would have been highly entertaining.

  6. kappy32 - Nov 23, 2011 at 2:27 AM

    How does a Philly get mentioned in the comments on this article? Did you feel left out? Derek Lowe, David Wright… You just had to add a Philly by mentioning Victorino. It was Wright & Cervelli who were mocked for wearing the MegaMan helmets, NOT Victorino. No one cares about him or your underachieving team. Next time you should embed an article that talks about the $100 million pitching staff that never got past the divisional round.

  7. brucewaynewins - Nov 23, 2011 at 10:39 AM

    So is the new helmet from Rawlings the “Chapman Helmet Rule”?

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