Catching: The toughest job in sports

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During a week-long stint at spring training in Arizona this year, I spent a lot of time with catchers.

I learned a lot about their craft, about what they go through on a daily basis. About the stresses of the job, the grind of the six-month long season, as well as the non-stop mental challenges that are equally as grueling as the physical ones.

I talked to guys who can hit and guys who can’t, guys who have been through the wars and guys who are just coming into their own. It was an interesting journey, the result of which manifested itself in this package I put together over at NBCSports.com.

He’s a scout and a coach. He’s a psychiatrist and a self-help therapist. He’s the first one to sacrifice his body and the last line of defense. And if he wants to make big-time money, he’s going to have to hit, too.

He’s got the responsibilities of a quarterback and yet most likely will receive the notoriety of an offensive lineman. Want to be a catcher? Good luck. It’s not going to be easy. In fact, you won’t find any sporting venture that’s tougher.

I hope you enjoy.

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Video: Daniel Hudson gets the final out to send Nationals to World Series

Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images
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Nationals fans will cherish this moment for a long, long time: Daniel Hudson got Tommy Edman to fly out to Victor Robles in center field for the final out of NLCS Game 4, wrapping up a 7-4 victory and completing a series sweep. The Nationals earned entry into the World Series for the first time in franchise history.

Here’s a recap of the game if you’re into that kind of thing.

The Nationals will anxiously watch the conclusion of the ALCS, which the Astros currently lead two games to one after defeating the Yankees 4-1 on Tuesday.