Thurm: Why the slow reaction on extending safety netting? The century-old law hasn’t kept pace with foul balls

From Wendy Thurm at The Athletic on July 2, 2019:

Over the Fourth of July holiday weekend, thousands of baseball fans will flock to ballparks to watch the last few games of the season’s first half. Players will be festooned in red, white and blue — their traditional team colors discarded for a few games to honor America’s independence. Night games will be followed by grand fireworks displays. 

This year, we’re as likely to see fireworks in the stands as we are in the night sky. No, not fans of opposing teams jostling after too many beers. Scorching, hard-hit foul balls, traveling faster than fans can duck, dive or weave to avoid getting hit. 

When a fan is hit by a foul ball, the injury can be devastating. Even deadly. Last week, Deadspin chronicled more than 10 fans whose lives were shattered by line drive foul balls: crushed eye sockets, fractured skulls and broken jaws.

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Originally published: July 4, 2019. Last Updated: July 4, 2019.