When a 97 mph fastball comes flying at the face of a batter, plenty can go wrong. But Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Carlos Gómez, who was nailed in the helmet Sunday evening, was able to walk away from a potentially deadly situation almost completely unharmed.
Gómez did not sustain any serious injuries, and it was concluded that he had not suffered a concussion during medical evaluations after a wild pitch from Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard, who accidentally pelted him in the earflap on the left side of his helmet. The only evidence of the hit was a small bruise left on Gómez's face from the helmet. The outfielder remarked that he "got lucky" — he may be right, considering that this is a man who sometimes swings so hard, his helmet falls off (this happened again only four days ago).
This also isn't the first time Gómez has been hit in the batter's box. He missed several weeks of play in 2010 after taking a pitch to the head while facing former Chicago Cubs pitcher Brian Schlitter. This time, he was wearing the now-mandatory Rawlings S100 helmet, which the league credits as a safer, more protective helmet. The S100, which has a carbon-fiber shell that is 300 percent stiffer and 130 times stronger than helmets made with plastic shells, became the official helmet of Major League Baseball in 2013, although with some resistance. Many players opposed the helmet for its bulkier aesthetic. But in scenarios such as the one Gómez faced Sunday, it's about safety over style.