Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis lined a foul ball into the stands on Saturday night at Citizens Bank Park. Unfortunately, the ball struck a young girl, who was taken to Children’s Hospital for treatment. She will be OK, thankfully.
The Phillies were among the 19 teams that extended protective netting behind home plate and along the first and third base sides towards the dugouts, as Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Inquirer notes, but only added about 10 feet.
Galvis is dumbfounded that the Phillies haven’t extended the protective netting further. He said, “What year is this? 2016? It’s 2016 and fans keep getting hit by foul balls when you’re supposed to have a net to protect the fans. The fans give you the money, so you should protect them, right? We’re worried about speeding up the game. Why don’t you put up a net and protect all the fans?”
Galvis continued, “They’re worried about stupid stuff. They should worry about the real stuff. That’s real stuff.” Referencing the girl he inadvertently struck with a foul ball, he said, “What if I broke all her teeth? What if I broke her nose? If I hit her in one eye and she loses that, what are they going to do? They’re going to forget in three days. It’s going to be a big deal for two, three days. Everybody in TV, media, whatever. But after three days what’s going to happen? They’re going to forget. But that family won’t forget that. Do you think the little baby will forget that? It’s true life. It’s something you have to put before everything. Safety first. Safety.”
Some vocal fans have protested the addition of protective netting, claiming — incorrectly — that it ruins their view of the game or prevents them from getting autographs before the game, but the players are all for the enhanced safety features. That Galvis is championing the cause is no surprise, as I’m sure it was tough for him to sleep thinking about hurting the young fan even if it was an accident.