MLB Safety Netting Extended Beyond Dugouts; Why This Is Bad News For Baseball Fans


JB Gidez, Student Journalist

It was announced in mid-December of 2019 that all of Major League Baseball stadiums will have the safety netting extended “substantially far beyond the end of the dugout” and some teams having it extended all the way to the foul pole.

Commissioner of the MLB, Robert Manfred, made this executive decision after another person was critically hit by a foul ball on May 29th this past season at Minute Maid Park in Houston Texas, the home of the Astros.

The little girl was sitting on her grandfather’s lap when the foul ball struck her. She was critically injured and a recent report announced that she is fine, but has to take seizure medication for “probably the rest of her life,” the family’s lawyer recently stated.

Many people in the United States feel the safety netting needs to be added now because they don’t want anyone else to get injured, and it isn’t worth all of these lives to keep putting at risk of danger.

I will agree, the circumstances of people being severely injured are very unfortunate, but ruining the aesthetic of the game by establishing nets around the majority of the field is not the answer. 

People should think about what they are doing when they buy tickets close to the field; there is always a small chance that a flying object (like a baseball ball or bat) may come your way, depending on where you sit. 

Based off of  all of the new reports coming out, you would think people would be more aware. But that’s the problem. 

People at the games are clearly not as aware as they should be, and unfortunately,  all fans will now pay the price, both literally and figuratively.

People attending a game should be watching every at-bat, especially if they are sitting close to the field. I mean, isn’t that why you came here in the first place? To watch baseball?

Baseball is a game of unpredictability; but that is what makes it so fun to play and watch. Going to the ballpark, seeing your favorite players going head-to-head, and possibly catching a fly ball. These are some of the things you anticipate when attending a game. 

But now in this modern day and age, there is a possibility of going to the ballpark and watching the world’s best players go at it, being taken away. I will admit, the intentions are good, but it is completely unnecessary to apply all of this safety netting. I mean at this point, just play in a dome with bystanders outside if you’re going to have all of these safety precautions. 

Some might say how it is not the people’s fault, and just how the people can not get out of the way of foul balls, but notice how no one gets hurt during the playoffs significantly? That’s because whoever is there, wants to be there and is watching every pitch and every play.

At the end of the day, baseball can’t adhere to people’s ignorance towards a situation that they put on themselves.