Kenny Kelly, a former major leaguer, suffered a concussion and a facial fracture after running into an unpadded concrete wall at Sovereign Bank Park, the home of the York Revolution (independent; Atlantic League), leaving coaches and players calling for a safer playing facility.
Affiliated baseball has minimum standards regarding outfield fence padding; rare is the facility without padding. (Wrigley Field may be the most high-profile example.) There are no such standards across independent baseball, however, and many indy ballparks feature plywood or chain-link fence for the home-run fence.
Kelly was playing outfield for the visiting Road Warriors when he crashed into the wall after chasing a hit to center field. After lying unconscious on the field he was strapped to a body board and taken to a local hospital.
“That’s the first time that’s happened since I’ve been here,” said Revs manager Andy Etchebarren. “I would think [installing padding] s a pretty good idea.”
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