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What They Were Thinking:

Marine Staff Sgt. DANIEL BEAR of the US Southern Command is out at the plate as Marine Lance Cpl. MATIAS FERREIRA, catcher for the Wounded Warrior Softball Amputee Team, blocks the plate in Miami Dec. 8, 2012. Ferreira lost both of his legs below the knee in the war in Afghanistan — Bear: “He was standing over the plate. I’ve played softball a lot and I’ve seen the collisions at home plate turn into ejections, so I wasn’t going to risk that. I figured the safe bet was to go around him. He was ready, he was there, and he secured that ball and I was out. Prior to the game the best thing we felt we could do for the Wounded Warriors was bring our best game to the field. Treat them like they were any other team and go out there with the intent to win and not hold anything back. It was a good collision and I would do it all over again, except this time I would try the right side because I was unlucky on the left side. He’s a lot bigger than me, so I don’t think I want to take him straight on.” Ferreira: “I blocked the plate. I learned to do that watching Javy Lopez. Oh yeah, he ran into me, but I just held onto the ball, and kept it up in my chest and that was it. It didn’t hurt. I was a Marine, still am and always will be. Once a Marine, always a Marine. We’re the toughest there is. It’s nothing at all.”

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