One of the few bright spots in Monday night's game against the Astros came on a 1-0 pitch to Jose Ramirez from Mike Fiers.
It's been well-documented that Jose Ramirez struggles to keep his helmet on his head, where it belongs. By Zack Meisel's count, this is the seventh time in 28 games that it's flown off during the course of play. This only counts for the times that we can see it happen. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that Ramirez loses his helmet in the locker room constantly. When he sets it on top of his locker, it slides off. When he sets in on a hook inside the locker, the hook breaks and sends it skittering across the floor. When securely tucked away in his equipment bag, it bores a hole through and breaks free, refusing to be kept in the darkness.
All of these exploits pale in comparison to the brief but beautiful flight it took on Monday. It takes, by my count, 1.95 seconds for the helmet to go from his head, bounce off of his left leg, kick off of his right heel, and land on his back. Jose Ramirez is about 5'9", and when he kicks the helmet, it appears that the helmet is about two full body lengths away from the bag. Two Angry Hamsters is about twelve feet, which is nearly 13% of the journey from first to second. It reaches a height of what I'm guessing is nine or ten feet. Carlos Correa is 6'4", and while not fully erect, it offers us the best reference point.
One of the most impressive things about the entire play? Correa is completely unfazed. The helmet lands on Ramirez's back a few inches away from his face, and he just gives it a quick glance. Oh look. Helmet. Nearly smashed my face. Better make sure to keep this tag applied in case Ramirez reaches for it with the hand that is on the bag.
The only thing that would have made this play better is if the helmet, after slamming into Ramirez's back, somehow found a way to flip on top of his head. I'm curious to know how his back feels today. I'm sure that a helmet falling from ten feet isn't quite as painful as taking a fastball in the small of your back, but is it too much to ask for a picture of the bruise? Please, Jose?
Keep your eyes peeled on the rest of the season from this promising star. While still young, Helmet is already turning heads around the league with its surprising athleticism, durability, and grit. It's rare to see such a young piece of sporting equipment put in the kind of effort every day that Helmet has in 2016. It is this author's hope that it is honored with a trip to the 2016 All-Star game, along with Giancarlo Stanton's face mask and Troy Tulowitzki's glove.