The family of the toddler who was struck by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium on Sept. 20 has spoken for the first time about the incident, and the girl luckily is OK.
But her father, Geoffrey Jacobson, is calling for change.
The young girl, who turns 2 this week, suffered multiple facial fractures, including her nose and orbital bones, and brain bleeding, Jacobson told The New York Times on Sunday. She went home on Sept. 25 but still has a long road to recovery, and doctors don’t know if her vision will return to normal.
“While there are numerous medical follow-ups and some remaining medical questions to be answered, we can’t ignore how fortunate we are that our little girl is home,” Jacobson wrote in a statement to The Times.
The Times reported that Jacobson agreed to the interview in part because he hadn’t heard from the Yankees. He said he’d spoken with third baseman Todd Frazier, who hit the foul ball, multiple times and received a short call from a Yankees public relations person. The Yankees hadn’t even made a statement about extending the netting at the ballpark at the time of the interview, something Jacobson called “ridiculous.”
“You just don’t want it to happen again,” Jacobson said. “No one should have to go through that. It’s a game. It’s like taking your kids to the mall or the amusement park to the zoo — it’s an activity. It shouldn’t be a place where you could die, and it doesn’t have to be. I get the reasoning and the pressure, but it’s senseless.”
The Yankees released a statement that they’d extend the netting at the stadium and their spring training facility shortly before The Times’ interview was published Sunday. Jacobson, who’s a real estate lawyer, said his family hasn’t considered litigation, but he blasted some teams’ hesitation to add netting in front of premium seats.
“The problem is that the economics of safety ignore that it’s somebody’s daughter or son in a hospital or worse,” Jacobson wrote. “People have been turned into statistics and probabilities so that fans can have a better view or seats can be sold for a higher price, and everyone believes they are safe and nothing bad will happen until it does.”
Thumbnail photo via Brad Penner/USA TODAY Sports Images
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