Padres’ Torres 1st pitcher to wear protective cap

Jun 21, 2014; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres relief pitcher Alex Torres (54) pitches during the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Petco Park.  

Jake Roth/Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Torres used the oversized gear when he worked the eighth inning of a 4-2 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Saturday night. There was little on-field reaction.

"There really isn’t that much difference between this and a regular hat," Torres said. "It may not look great, but I can’t feel a difference."

Torres said he’s had the cap, approved by Major League Baseball in January, for about a month. He said he tried it on while playing catch on a few occasions before finally wearing it in Saturday night’s game.

Asked why he decided to wear it in a game, Torres said: "If it can save your life, why wouldn’t you? I’m not worried about how it looks if it works."

Torres, 26, was with Tampa Bay last season when Rays pitcher Alex Cobb suffered a concussion when he was struck on his right ear by a line drive on June 15.

"That’s a scary thing to witness and it makes you think that could be you," he said.