Over the past year-plus, multiple high-profile players and agents have come out in favor of expanding the use of protective netting at Major League Baseball stadiums. Currently nets only cover the sections surrounding home plate, and there’s a push to have it extend farther up both foul lines.
This issue was shot down by the owners in the last two collective bargaining agreements — 2007 and 2012 — but there seems to be a bigger groundswell of support for the extension of netting right now than at any time in recent memory. And the people in the commissioner’s office have been listening …
“We are actively studying and evaluating a number of issues related to fan safety, including bat safety, netting, etc., at the league level,” MLB spokesman Pat Courtney told FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal.
In that Rosenthal piece is an announcement that the Phillies intend to extend the netting at Citizens Bank Park. But it might not happen this year because they don’t want to do it and then have MLB come out with a new, different, suddenly-official set of parameters. Major League Baseball, meanwhile, has to examine the different codes in all of the cities and counties where its teams play.
Look for something more concrete on this over the offseason.
Good on everybody involved in wanting to get ahead of a potential tragedy.
Joe Frisaro, the Miami beat writer for MLB.com, has the report …
On what is shaping up as a lengthy “to do” list for the Marlins in the offseason will be addressing the dimensions at spacious Marlins Park.
Team president David Samson said on Wednesday that the organization is considering moving in and lowering the fences at one of Major League Baseball’s toughest places to hit home runs.
“We haven’t formulated a final plan,” Samson told MLB.com. “Still looking, but trying to make a decision for next season.”
Marlins Park has some of the longest dimensions in Major League Baseball along with some of the tallest walls. That was somewhat intentional — the Marlins wanted a pitcher-friendly park — but power numbers are down across the league since the stadium was first concepted and they continue to fall. Miami is home to one of the biggest sluggers in the game, Giancarlo Stanton, who signed a 13-year, $325 million deal this past March.
Miami ranks 26th in the majors in homers at home this season. That’s tied with Oakland.
Padres outfielder Wil Myers has appeared in just 35 games this season due to an ongoing left wrist injury. He underwent surgery in the middle of June and was only expected to miss eight weeks, but here we are in late August and he’s just now beginning to take batting practice …
Myers could be ready around mid-September if he’s able to avoid setbacks from here, but it’s a safe bet the out-of-contention Padres aren’t going to rush him. Myers — acquired from the Rays last December in a three-team, 11-player trade — has played in only 210 major league games since debuting in June 2013.