Frawley Stadium undergoes final preparations before the 2019 Carolina League Season

Frawley Stadium undergoes final preparations before the 2019 Carolina League Season

Fans going to watch the Blue Rocks at Frawley Stadium this season will see an increase to the protective netting at the edge of the field.

The Blue Rocks announced Wednesday they've partnered with the State of Delaware and the Delaware Stadium Corporation, who owns the stadium, to extend the netting from behind home plate to 200 feet down each side of the field.

That length allows all permanent seating at the stadium to be behind the net, which will be made of Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene.

In addition, Blue Rocks General Manager Andrew Layman says it will help in the concourse as well, especially on the first base side where the concession stand for Chickie's and Pete's orientation to the field can create its own hazard.

"People wait in lines and their backs are to the field, and the ball can get up into the stands while they're waiting in line for the concession or games, I think it will make it a much, much safer place with a lot more peace of mind for everybody."

The decision to upgrade Frawley Stadium resembles decisions being made at the Major League level, including CItizens Bank Park, where the Phillies are pushing their netting all the way to the foul pole.

The extra netting is partially in response to a series of injuries in recent years where sharply-struck foul balls have hit fans, some who weren't paying attention, and some who just couldn't react in time.

It's also the latest upgrade at Frawley Stadium, which converted to LED field lights in 2018, and new seats and bleachers in 2015.

The 2019 Carolina League Champions will hold their home opener on Thursday, April 16 against Salem.