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Fan death prompts Rangers to lift railings

ARLINGTON, Texas — The Rangers plan to make all the protective railings at their stadium the same height, raising some as much as a foot to make their stadium safer after the death of a fan during a recent game.

Team executive vice president Rob Matwick said Tuesday that the team intends for all rails in the front of seating sections to be 42 inches at Rangers Ballpark.

Architectural and engineering studies are under way at the 17-year-old ballpark to determine how to do the work.

Railings around the ballpark now are 30 or 34 inches in most areas, with 42-inch rails already at the base of aisles that lead to the front row. City building requirements are that guardrails must be at least 26 inches high.

"Part of the goal is to not only raise it, but to raise it to the highest standard that exists in the United States at this time, and to do that uniformly on all the front rows around the ballpark," Matwick said.

Shannon Stone, a Brownwood firefighter, died less than an hour after he tumbled headfirst over a rail in leftfield during the July 7 game.

ALOMAR HONORED: The Blue Jays will retire Hall of Fame 2B Roberto Alomar's No. 12 on July 31. Alomar will be the first player so honored by Toronto. In other Blue Jays news, 3B Jose Bautista returned after missing three games with an ankle injury. And RH reliever Casey Janssen was activated from the disabled list, and LHP Luis Perez was optioned to Triple-A Las Vegas.

ASTROS-GIANTS TRADE: Houston traded 2B Jeff Keppinger to San Francisco for two Double-A pitchers, RH starter Henry Sosa and RH reliever Jason Stoffel. The Astros also purchased the contract of INF Jose Altuve from Double-A Corpus Christi. The Giants called up 1B/OF Brandon Belt, one of their top prospects, from Triple-A Fresno.

RANGERS-O'S TRADE: Texas acquired veteran utility man Nick Green and cash from the Orioles for LHP Zach Phillips.

A'S: 3B Scott Sizemore left in the fourth inning when Tigers RHP Rick Porcello hit him in his left jaw with a pitch.

CARDINALS: SS Ryan Theriot was suspended two games and fined an undisclosed amount for making contact with an umpire during Sunday's game.

INDIANS: An MRI exam on CF Grady Sizemore's injured right knee revealed only the existing bone bruise. … OF Travis Buck left the game in the fifth inning after he was beaned by Twins LHP Francisco Liriano.

MARLINS: OF Chris Coghlan, the former East Lake standout, had a setback in his rehab from left knee inflammation and returned to Miami from Double-A Jacksonville.

METS: SS Jose Reyes and RF Carlos Beltran were in the lineup together for the first time since July 2, when Reyes strained his left hamstring. Reyes was activated off the disabled list, and Beltran returned after missing three games with flu-like symptoms.

ORIOLES: RH reliever Alfredo Simon was reinstated from the restricted list, and INF Josh Bell was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. Simon, the lead suspect in the fatal shooting of his cousin Jan. 1, returned to the United States after a legal hearing in the Dominican Republic was suspended when prosecution witnesses did not show.

PHILLIES: RHP Roy Halladay expects to make his next scheduled start after leaving Monday's game against the Cubs in the fifth because of the steamy conditions. … CF Shane Victorino was activated from the disabled list after missing two weeks with a sprained right thumb.

RED SOX: RHP Clay Buchholz, on the disabled list since June 19 with a lower back strain, is scheduled to have his first throwing session off a mound Friday.

TWINS: 1B Justin Morneau was cleared to resume baseball activities three weeks after having surgery for a pinched nerve in his neck.

YANKEES: RH reliever Sergio Mitre went on the 15-day disabled list with right shoulder inflammation.

Fan death prompts Rangers to lift railings 07/19/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 19, 2011 9:43pm]
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