Red Sox to expand protective netting in '18

January 20th, 2018
Red Sox club president/CEO Sam Kennedy said Friday that the team will expand it's protective netting this season. (AP)Charles Krupa/AP

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. -- The Red Sox will expand the protective netting at Fenway Park in 2018, club president/CEO Sam Kennedy said on Friday night.

"As you know, before 2016 we expanded to the inside wall of the dugouts and we're going to go beyond that in 2018, all the way down to about Field Box 79, down the left field line and then all the way down to almost Canvas Alley in the Field Box 9 area," Kennedy said. "We're still finalizing the exact dimensions, but it will be a dramatic expansion of our netting, so it's an important thing we're working on right now. It would be very similar to the existing netting between from the on-deck circle to the inner walls, a continuation of that beyond the dugouts."

Kennedy also said the Red Sox continue to make progress in getting Yawkey Way renamed. Red Sox owner John Henry said in August the club felt it was important to rename the street outside Fenway Park. In particular, Henry said he was 'haunted' by the fact the Red Sox, under late owner Tom Yawkey, were the last MLB team to integrate.

However, the Red Sox won't be able to name the street after beloved slugger David Ortiz, as the club had hoped.

"It's been made clear in our research and due diligence that you can't currently petition for a living person when there's other property owners on the street. There's a provision that allows you to petition for a name of a living person if there aren't other property abuttors on the street. So a living person is out of the question. So we've had a few different ideas but we're not quite there yet," Kennedy said.

"We are in active conversations with City Hall, the mayor has been terrific and his staff understands our desire to formally petition, but we've got to get a resolution on a few logistical items -- like a name, for one -- that we're going to formally petition for. When there's news to report on that, we'll let you know."