In 2011, veteran MLB outfielder Laynce Nix started suffering from Achilles tendon problems. In 2012, he missed significant time due to a calf injury. Both ailments limited his production as a member of the Washington Nationals and Philadelphia Phillies, respectively.
Upon further review, Nix has concluded that Nike baseball cleats are to blame for the leg injuries, which have plagued him for parts of the past two seasons. Nix saw his OPS drop from .805 in 2010 to .727 in 2012.
From the Delco Times:
“To be short and direct,” Nix said Wednesday, “the shoes that I was wearing didn’t flex where my toes flex, and it caused tension in the Achilles’ (tendon) and calves. That built up for a couple of years in my Achilles and calves.”
Although Nix had a few disabled-list stints over the years — a strained abdomen, a turned ankle, a shoulder that required surgery — he hadn’t been one to have leg problems until the last two seasons. He said his Achilles’ tendon gave him issues while in Washington, then he had the calf problems last year in Philly. Nix said a conversation with Jimmy Rollins and Shane Victorino — both wearers of Nike products, and both of whom have had calf issues in the past — led him to suspect his cleats were the problem.As Big League Stew points out, why didn't Nix just throw out the uncomfortable kicks in favor of new ones? We may never know the answer to that question. However, Nix says he is swearing off the Nike's from now on.
“I’m switching up,” Nix said. “I’ve been going between Mizuno, New Balance and Adidas. I’m shopping around.”With his shoe situation resolved, the 32-year-old is hoping to land a spot on Philadelphia's Opening Day roster as an extra outfielder. He is batting .219 (7-32) with one homer and five RBI this spring.