​Baseball players say broken-bat injury at Fenway could have been prevented

Baseball The horrific broken-bat incident at Fenway Park Friday night that seriously injured a fan could have been prevented, players tell FOX Sports.Tonya Carpenter was sitting in the second row between home plate and third base with her husband and son when Brett Lawrie's bat shattered on a groundout. The barrel of the bat sailed into the stands, striking Carpenter in the forehead. She was listed in serious condition late Saturday at an area hospital. MORE: Who will be No. 1 pick in this year's Draft?FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal says sources told him the Major League Baseball Players Association had requested more protective netting be added down the foul lines at ballparks to prevent injuries from flying bats and foul balls. The players union reportedly made the request during collective bargaining negotiations in both 2007 and 2012. Diamondbacks reliever Brad Ziegler, who sits on the negotiating committee for the PA, told FOX Sports that owners balked at the request."Some owners are afraid to upset the fans that pay some of the highest ticket prices, when in reality, it's an effort to protect those very fans," Ziegler said."(The owners) seem afraid that fans will lose access to the players — autographs, getting baseballs, etc. — and that will cause those ticket holders to be unhappy. Or, that they'd have to watch the game through a net. (But) fans behind home plate pay the highest prices, have the same issues, and yet those seats are always full." issued a statement Saturday saying it is committed to fan safety."We have the utmost concern for the victim of this terribly unfortunate incident … Fan safety is our foremost goal for all those who choose to support our game by visiting our ballparks and we will always strive for that experience to be safe and fan-friendly."Some baseball teams already use temporary netting down the foul lines during batting practice, and full netting down the lines is standard in Japan. The NHL added protective nettin

g behind goals after a teenage girl was struck in the head by a puck at a Columbus Blue Jackets game in 2002. She died two days later. players union representatives told FOX Sports that owners do not want to restrict the views, or access to players, that fans enjoy in those premium seats along the first- and third-base sides."The blowback we got is that people pay lots of money for those seats and don't want a net in front of them," said Angels pitcher C.J. Wilson, his team's players union rep. "The difficulty for owners is balancing the premium seats and the safety of the people in the premium seats."Obviously, there is a lot of velocity involved with anything that goes into the stands, whether it's errant throws, broken bats, foul balls -- especially foul balls. It's terrible whenever something happens and somebody gets hurt. That's why we encourage people to literally bring a glove to the game. It's completely random when it happens. It's not predictable."While Friday's broken-bat incident will prompt everyone from team owners to executives to revisit the issue of adding more safety netting, foul balls actually cause far more injuries at games. A 2014 Bloomberg News analysis found about 1,750 fans are injured each year by batted balls at games.