For the second straight season Harper will miss a significant stretch of the season with an injury attributed to his style of play. Last season he missed 31 games following a collision with an outfield wall that resulted in a severe case of knee bursitis. Now Harper's 2014 campaign has been derailed by a thumb injury suffered while aggressively sliding headfirst into third base.
Harper is the latest example of the dangers of sliding headfirst. While many perform the headfirst slide believing it to be quicker, the real answer isn't quite so clear. A study performed in 2002 found no significant difference between the feet-first and headfirst methods, while others have used physics to argue the headfirst slide is actually faster. While the debate on their advantages continues so too does the discussion on the inherent risks of each method of approaching the bag. When attempting to slide feet first, the runner has more control and can avoid c
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