Athletics extend protective netting to far ends of dugouts

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Athletics extend protective netting to far ends of dugouts
FILE - In this April 4, 2017, file photo, Oakland Athletics' Rajai Davis celebrates with fans as he scores on a throwing error after hitting a two-run triple off Los Angeles Angels' Bud Norris during the seventh inning of a baseball game in Oakland, Calif. The Athletics will expand protective netting between the stands and the playing field to the far ends of both dugouts ahead of the 2018 season.(AP Photo/Ben Margot, File)

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Oakland Athletics will expand protective netting between the stands and the playing field to the far ends of both dugouts ahead of the 2018 season.

The netting will be a similar green color as the grass on the field to reduce the visual distraction to fans in attendance and those watching on television, the team said Tuesday. The A’s will also expand the netting at the team’s spring training ballpark in Mesa, Arizona.

Team President Dave Kaval said the extra safety measures are consistent with recommendations from Major League Baseball.

Boston, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Colorado, Detroit, the New York Yankees, Milwaukee, Minnesota, San Diego, Seattle and Toronto are among teams to announce expanded netting this year.

By the end of last season, Atlanta, Houston, Kansas City, Minnesota, the New York Mets, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Texas and Washington had netting that reached the far ends of the dugouts.

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