Photo of a New York Yankees player standing in the batter's box at Yankee Stadium.

Image Credit: Shinya Suzuki (CC BY 2.0)

After several spectators were injured by foul balls at Yankee Stadium in 2017, the New York Yankees announced that they would be extending the netting to provide more protection to fans. The netting was not only raised higher but extended further down the first and third base lines. It didn’t take long for New York Yankees fans to complain about the netting’s support poles which obstructed their view of the field.

New York Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner took notice of the numerous complaints and made the appropriate adjustments quickly while the New York Yankees were on road trips to Boston and Detroit. The 11 black poles that supported the netting were removed and replaced with a cable support system that hangs above the seats. According to Lonn Trost, the Chief Operating Officer of the New York Yankees, Hal Steinbrenner objected to the support poles before the season started. Lonn Trost also oversaw the installation of the new netting system during the offseason.

All 30 Major League Baseball teams have announced that they will be extending netting at their home stadiums beginning in 2018. There was great pressure from MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred for all stadiums to implement greater safety measures at their home stadiums. The New York Yankees were originally resistant to adding more netting due to fear of obstructing their fans’ view of the field. The seats surrounding the infield at Yankee Stadium include the Legends suite and Champions suite seats which are owned by many corporations and small businesses.


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