Washington Nationals: Takeaways after Bryce Harper’s scare

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Whether it was Harper’s cleats or the wet base itself, there should never be a case of any player slipping on MLB provided equipment.

MLB has made strides in recent years by mandating coaches wear protective helmets and stadiums expanding foul ball netting areas. The sport plays more than mere lip service to safety.

Still, players and umpires must have more say over field conditions and equipment in use. Likewise, shoemakers must ensure cleats do their proper job. Outside of those portable on-deck circles with the painted team logos, everyone from a ball boy to the umpire crew chief must feel secure walking around the field.

With everything in a game considered souvenirs, cleats, gloves and even bases are future sale items and changed as often as uniforms and socks. That is part of the business. We want a piece of the action.

Although the technology of constructing playing fields has grown as new parks are built, sometimes they remain unsafe for play.

No player should ever lose footing on an actual base by running. Yes, the base is anchored into the ground with a rod so they stay in place. But, if the canvas or plastic surface becomes slippery when wet, then there are problems.

Instead of having special bases for every game or series, perhaps have special ones built for heavy weather. We have hats and uniforms that wick water and sweat away why not a specific rain bag with heavier canvas?

Or, have the umpires check to see if everyone has proper cleats for the weather. Traction is important.