49ers quarterback Alex Smith often wears a Giants hat to his post-game press conferences, showing support for another San Francisco team, but Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News reports that the NFL has threatened to fine him $15,000 if he keeps doing it:
The reason: A Giants cap constitutes non-sponsored gear, and players must abide by the NFL’s dress code 90 minutes before and after each game.
One proposed solution: Have the Giants fund that post-game attire for such a loyal fan.
“Yeah, can you call Larry Baer for me?” Smith asked reporters in reference to the Giants’ chief executive.
Smith is making about $9 million this season and it sounds like he’s planning to keep wearing the Giants hat even if they fine him, which would run him $210,000 for the remaining 14 games.
The Red Sox are the latest team to extend the protective netting at their ballpark this winter. According to a statement by club president Sam Kennedy, the exact dimensions of the netting have yet to be determined, but it will likely stretch “all the way to Field Box 79, down the left field line and then all the way down to almost Canvas Alley in the Field Box 9 area.”
Fenway Park received additional protective netting prior to the 2016 season, when the netting behind home plate was lengthened to the home and visitor dugouts. Per Kennedy’s statement, the current expansion should cover everything but the outfield corners, making it nearly impossible for a line drive foul to reach fans in the lower boxes.
After a toddler sustained serious injuries from a 105-MPH foul ball to the face at Yankee Stadium last September, over half of all MLB teams decided to take more extreme preventative measures in advance of the 2018 season. The Brewers, Cardinals, Braves, Astros, Royals, Pirates, Rangers, Padres, Nationals, Mariners, Phillies, Mets, Reds, Blue Jays, Giants, Yankees, Twins and Indians are among the organizations to address the issue over the last several years, while others have yet to take significant action.