Acid Flashback Friday: John Olerud’s Helmet
As a kid, there was nothing I hated more than wearing a helmet. Although it was for my safety, at the time … wearing a helmet simply wasn’t “cool”.
John Olerud however, made it cool to wear a helmet.
For this week’s Acid Flashback Friday, we take a look back at former Blue Jays first baseman John Olerud and more specifically his helmet.
Personally, I can’t think of any other piece of equipment in Blue Jays history that has more lustre than Johnny O’s helmet.
For years, I wondered why John Olerud wore a batting helmet at first base. The story is that Olerud suffered a brain aneurysm back in 1989 during a morning workout at Washington State University. In order to avoid further injuries to the head, his doctors advised him to wear a helmet while playing the field.
Olerud recovered from the injury, but he chose to keep wearing the helmet at first base as a matter of precaution and maybe also because it was force of habit. John wore his batting helmet in the field for the duration of his major league career.
My parents in part can thank John Olerud for keeping me safe, because he encouraged me and other kids to protect their noggins – whether it was on the field, riding a bike, or participating in a backyard wrestling battle royal featuring a Dionk The Clown look alike.
Coincidentally, there is a blog out there called John Olerud’s Helmet – awesome!
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