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White Sox to extend protective netting

Improvements at Guaranteed Rate Field, Camelback Ranch will ensure fans' safety
MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- The White Sox plan to extend the protective netting at Guaranteed Rate Field to the end of each dugout and over the top of the dugout, as announced by the team Friday at SoxFest.

"Inside the dugout is the Major League recommendation," White Sox senior vice president of communications Scott Reifert said. "We're going to the outside edge.

CHICAGO -- The White Sox plan to extend the protective netting at Guaranteed Rate Field to the end of each dugout and over the top of the dugout, as announced by the team Friday at SoxFest.

"Inside the dugout is the Major League recommendation," White Sox senior vice president of communications Scott Reifert said. "We're going to the outside edge.

"We're going past first base and third base, how the dugout ends there. Over the top of the dugout will now have a net in front of it."

Camelback Ranch, which serves as the Spring Training home for the White Sox and Dodgers in Glendale, Ariz., will be doing the same, per Reifert. This netting should be in place by the White Sox home opener on April 5 against the Tigers, while Camelback Ranch is trying to be ready by the Cactus League opener between the White Sox and Dodgers on Feb. 23.

"It's a safety issue for fans, obviously. The rest of the industry is going that way," Reifert said. "Everybody in baseball is heading that direction. It's just [figuring out how to] install it and keep the fan experience."

Reifert added that Major League Baseball is looking at different colors of netting to address the fan issue.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox