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The Sleeve That Could Save Baseball: Exclusive Look at New MLB Technology


Tommy John surgeries have exploded over the past two decades.  While this might seem good for the business of orthopedics, many doctors are doing everything they can to make that number go down.  With an increase of over 700% in the number of Tommy John surgeries performed over the past decade, top surgeons Dr. Timothy Kremchek are noticing an even faster increase in youth athletes.

Dr. Kremchek is one of the founding doctors of Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine.  He also serves as the team physician for the Cincinnati Reds, and has been a loud voice in the battle against youth pitching injuries from overuse.  After hearing about the new sleeve, Dr. Kremchek responded, “I think this has the potential to be huge! What we do know is that fatigue causes injury, fatigue causes a change in mechanics, which in turn causes increased stress and varies torque on the medial elbow. Knowing when these occur will greatly diminish injury to the elbow, and I believe the shoulder too.”

What has been lacking until now is the ability to calculate fatigue under game conditions.  With the biomechanical advancements of Joe Nolan, baseball finally has the portable, accurate technology to do just that.  Motus is Nolan’s renown provider of biomechanical devices based in Florida.  He has been instrumental in developing what they call “The Motus Pitcher Sleeve.”  It has the potential to revolutionize pitching and save the arms of countless players.

The Sleeve, while twenty years in the making, is leading the way in accurate, markerless technology and portable units.  Although the rate of change it baseball can be glacial, some teams are starting to adopt the technology to limited extents.  Pushing the technology forward could result in saving a lot of players from injury.  However, a universal adoption at the MLB level this soon is unlikely.

The Sleeve appears just like any other compression sleeve produced by Nike, UnderArmour, or competitors.  However, it contains a small device that can capture things like arm speed, release point, force on the ulnar collateral ligament, and calculate angles of the elbow and shoulder.

For all of the benefits of motion capture, it doesn’t allow team physicians or coaches to take into account game conditions.  There is a lot of adrenaline that impacts how a player performs, and when they start to fatigue.  The Sleeve will measure all of this accurately. Right out of the box.

Read the Full Story here on the Bleacher Report.

Thanks to Will Carroll, Sports Injuries Lead Writer – Bleacher Report