The Toughest Position In Football Is Catcher
I think most of us who have followed sports from an early age would agree that baseball is NOT a contact sport. The only hitting that should take place is the bat on the ball but there are really only two reasonable instances of contact between participants. Occasionally there will be a collision between teammates in the outfield over a fly ball that is about to fall between them. But obviously countless hours are spent in spring training working on avoiding such collisions. There are also the highly entertaining fistfights that break out when one pitcher deliberately throws at the head of an opposing batter. As if such actions are going to prevent further behavior. To the contrary it only induces more headhunting. Most of us would also agree that the first of these two types of contact is inevitable(outfielders will always run into each other because they're human) and the second will continue to exist because quite frankly landing a couple of punches makes any ballplayer feel better. That's leaves me with the third type of contact in baseball which is COMPLETELY AVOIDABLE.
It has always been acceptable in baseball that the catcher be allowed to stand in front of home plate as a baserunner rounds third and heads for home and block the plate and it has also been equally acceptable that the baserunner has every right to run right over the catcher if he does so. If this is acceptable then why is it not acceptable for the same thing to occur at first, second, or third base? When is the last time you saw somebody running for third base and the third baseman position himself right in front of the bag and make the runner go through him to get to the bag? The answer is NEVER. That is because it is against the rules to do so. Well actually i'm not sure about that but the fact I have never seen it after watching a 1000 baseball games in my lifetime would tell you it probably is. I know what people will say to that however. They will say that home base is the only base that results in a score and protecting that base is more important than protecting other bases. Well the last time I checked you must touch first, second, and third before you touch home. So if you block any one of those plates than the baserunner obviously will never make it home.
The argument from the other side will then be that the catcher wears all kinds of protection and therefore he can absorb the contact that the infielders cannot. I want you to take a look at the hit Buster Posey took last year that ended his season and tell me if you think that the protection he was wearing helped him avoid injury. YOU CAN'T EVEN HIT SOMEBODY THAT HARD IN FOOTBALL ANYMORE. If you hit somebody that hard in football you'd draw a 15 yard penalty, a fine, and a possible suspension. The correct way for a catcher to position himself is just like any other infielder: straddle the bag with legs spread wide and one leg on either side of the bag. Then you catch the ball and drop the glove down to make the tag on the runner sliding beneath you. HOW SIMPLE CAN I MAKE IT.