In June, the Chicago White Sox became the first MLB team to announce that they would expand protective netting all the way to the foul pole. During today’s Mets-White Sox game, New York right fielder Jeff McNeil used the Chicago ballpark’s recent addition to make a beautiful, innovative circus catch on a ball in foul territory.
The play began with White Sox rookie Eloy Jiménez hitting the ball off the end of his bat and into the far-right corner of the park, where McNeil had to cover a long distance in a short amount of time to make the catch. He got there, but in olden days, his extreme momentum would have set him up for some serious injury. However, instead of breaking someone’s skull by flipping over the wall and crashing into the seats after the out, McNeil gracefully tumbled into the netting, laid triumphantly in the crowd for a moment, and then acrobatically landed on his cleats.
Anyone still complaining about nets hurting the game can kindly shut up now.