Joe Girardi wouldn’t order Francisco Cervelli to wear the extra-padded helmet that David Wright made famous, but after hearing a pretty strong suggestion from his manager Cervelli will give the plus-sized headgear a try. With two concussions in the past few months and an estimated 10 head injuries in his life, Cervelli knows he can’t afford to take any chances.
“It’s not about how I look,” Cervelli said. “I’ve got to take care. If it’s for my health, I’ve got to do it.”
That doesn’t mean he likes it. Cervelli admitted he looked in the mirror plenty of times after receiving his new helmet – he originally thought it was a joke when he was called to the trainer’s room to pick it up – and when asked what he thought of the look, Cervelli shrugged. “It’s ugly,” he said.
Still, he’s good-natured about it. Jorge Posada was the first person to call him Gazoo — “What a guy,” Cervelli said, laughing — and Cervelli knows he’ll get plenty of digs from his teammates. As long as he’s playing in the majors, he’ll deal with it. “I just want to be here,” he said. “I can handle it if I’m here.”
(For what it’s worth, I felt the helmet – it’s definitely heavier, but not as much as you might think. The biggest obstacle, I would think, is just that it may throw off the balanced feel of a hitter’s head as he looks out at the pitcher. After a few weeks, I’d imagine that unusual sensation would fade. Cervelli says he won’t wear the helmet behind the plate or on the bases – only at-bat.)
UPDATE, 5:59 p.m.: It just started pouring here at The Boss. I’ll keep you updated on the plan for later as soon as we hear anything.