The Unexpected Reason Some Baseball Players Pee On Their Hands

Generally speaking, urine tends to be something we're in a hurry to be rid of. According to Live Science, the average adult human bladder can hold between 17 ounces (for women) and 23 ounces (for men) though at around 10 ounces it tends to be far more comfortable to go and relieve it all immediately.

Urine is, after all, a waste product. As Winchester Hospital states, it is largely composed of water, but the proportion of potentially harmful ingredients means it can be drunk in survival situations, but is certainly not a long-term solution to the perils of dehydration. Recycled urine (to put it delicately) would naturally have a lower water-to-everything-else ratio over time, after all.

Nevertheless, the virtues of urine extend beyond emergency life-or-death situations. In the sport of baseball, players have devised an ingenious (and slightly gross) use for it. Unbelievably, peeing on one's own hands can prove very advantageous in a match. Here's why that is.

Jameson Taillon pondered the virtues of pee

Baseball players' hands are of paramount importance, regardless of their position on the field. They're the tools of the trade, and over the course of a career, they'll take an awful lot of punishment. The top athletes, of course, have the very best lotions and potions at their disposal. But, some consider the rudimentary method of peeing on an injury to be very effective.

In May 2018, according to The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the Pittsburgh Pirates' Jameson Taillon sustained an injury that would be devastating to any pitcher: a significant cut on his dominant hand. He reportedly had only played for the first three innings before having to leave the match as a result of the injury. With a busy baseball schedule and another game just days away, Taillon had no opportunity for convalescence but was desperate to get back onto the field.

According to the outlet, he was beset by suggestions for things to try to aid the cut's healing. Among ideas, like a cream of Vitamin E and the sleeve of silver nitrate he took to wearing, Taillon was recommended to pee on the cut. He seemed quite open to the idea, stating, "if it helps, I'll put a sign-up sheet and everyone can come and pee ... I don't care. I just want it to go away."

Gross as it may sound, the sport has a bit of a history of personal urination, and there's a scientific basis behind the practice.

An outlandish 'treatment' that just might work

According to one installment of the Two On 2 debate series (via ESPN), Jorge Posada and Moises Alou are two acclaimed baseball players who regularly indulged in a little self-urination on their hands. The source reports that urine is sterile and WebMD writes that the urea, contained within pee, can help heal some wounds.

Posada said, Two On 2 goes on, that the urine " keeps your hands from getting callused and cracking."

Posada, per the New York Post, was one of rare breed of players who did not wear batting gloves. During his time, the source reports, some baseball players kept their hands durable and tried to prevent injury to them in this way.

In 2011, Posada told The Boston Globe that he tried using gloves early in his baseball career, but they never felt right to him. He protected his hands in his own, rather gross, way until he admitted, "My wife found out about it and made me stop." Athletes around the world have their superstitions, and there does appear to be a scientific basis for this one. Whether there are more practical and efficient remedies for a given ailment is something to keep in mind, though.