Cleveland Indians expanding safety netting at Progressive Field

Cleveland Indians expanding safety netting at Progressive Field

Cleveland Indians expanding safety netting at Progressive Field

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Cleveland and Minnesota became the latest teams to say that they'll extend the protective netting at their ballparks before next season, joining a slew of other clubs that made similar announcements after a young girl suffered bleeding on the brain from being struck by a ball at Yankee Stadium in September. Also, the canopy nets will be stretched slightly farther down the third-base line. The Twins will raise the height of the existing protective netting above the dugouts from seven feet to nine feet. The netting will cover the entire Dugout Box seating area-Sections 1-17. Lower-level seats at Target Field are closer to home plate than in any other Major League Baseball venue.

The AL Central champions are prioritizing fan safety while using the latest technology to "minimize the intrusion on the live-game experience" at the ballpark. The Twins specifically noted that the netting would be knotless and come in multiple shades of green so as to better blend in with the grass on the field.

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MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said he was encouraged by teams' efforts to expand netting at ballparks the day after a girl was hit by a 105 miles per hour foul ball at Yankee Stadium in September.

The Indians have started the process of alerting season-ticket holders whose seats are affected by the expansion.

Many teams, including the Twins and Red Sox, already extended their netting prior to the 2016 season based on a recommendation from the commissioner's office that all fans within 70 feet of home plate be protected.

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