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In the Corner with Dan Hughes

May 6, 2010

Last week, an adult slowpitch softball pitcher was killed when a line drive hit him. 

This program is a tribute to George Crisp, and a look at what might be done to prevent further deaths on the mound.

For articles on playing, coaching, and managing slowpitch softball, see my webpage

Mike Vieceli
almost nine years ago

Hi Dan,

What a unfortunate and tragic event to take the life of George Crisp!!

I have been pitching 12\" slow-pitch since 1982. I have been hit numerous times including a vicious hit above my left eye that caused me 9 stitches. (The team was actually trying to knock me out of the game). And I am a pitcher that plays with class. I never taunt the other team.

Injury as a pitcher is part of the game. I wear soccer guards to protect my shins, kneepads to protect my knees, a cup, and a thickly padded wristguard on my glove hand as well. Most players make some comment. My response is \" you pitch\" and they always seem to back down. Everyone knows how dangerous it can be.

I agree the leagues should scale back on the over 98mph bats and they should use the lower COR balls. But, if you don\'t like it, join a league with those restrictions.

Mandatory faceguarding would be a travesty to the sport. Imagine just asking George if he would have wanted to wear a mask? I doubt it.

We already have protective hockey nets and they are possibly looking into netting for foul balls at baseball games.

We cannot prevent every death. Sometimes, freak things just happen. Unfortunately, for these families, it is a life changer. However, he could have been driving home from a softball game and been killed in an auto accident. I wonder what the odds of being struck by a softball and killed actually are?

My prayers go out to George Crisp\'s Family.


Mike Vieceli, a 53 year old pitcher who has made similar comments in the past about being killed on a softball diamond.