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All major league ballparks will require metal detector screening by the 2015 season

Jan 21, 2014, 9:42 PM EDT

mlb security getty Getty Images

Ronald Blum of the Associated Press has the news:

NEW YORK (AP) — Entering a big league ballpark will be a bit like going through an airport by 2015.

Major League Baseball has told its 30 teams they must implement security screening for fans by then, either with hand-held metal detection or walk-through magnetometers.

“This procedure, which results from MLB’s continuing work with the Department of Homeland Security to standardize security practices across the game, will be in addition to bag checks that are now uniform throughout MLB,” baseball spokesman Michael Teevan told the Associated Press on Tuesday. “We conducted testing of these measures at the All-Star game and at both World Series venues last year and were pleased that it was effective and received without issue from fans.”

The Seattle Mariners are going to implement the new screening system this season at Safeco Field.

There haven’t been many instances of weapon violence at baseball stadiums and it’s a shame that such extensive security measures have been deemed necessary, but it’s also understandable that Major League Baseball wants to avoid potential catastrophes. MLB stadiums hold between 35,000 and 56,000 fans.

  1. yourcubreporter - Jan 21, 2014 at 9:46 PM

    Only a matter of time, I suppose…

    • mick2014 - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:21 PM

      In Anaheim stadium they already make you lift up your shirt before you enter, thankfully for me I’m in shape but others look like pigs.

      • clydeserra - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:42 PM

        that is so you dont sneak beers in.

      • yahmule - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:08 AM

        Unfortunately for you, you’re a shallow dick.

      • pauleee - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:34 AM

        I didn’t go to a lot of games last year but I have never had to lift my shirt. Do you have “Obnoxious Asshole” tattooed on your forehead?

  2. phillysports1 - Jan 21, 2014 at 9:54 PM

    Starting with citi field . Lol

  3. chacochicken - Jan 21, 2014 at 9:55 PM

    It appears that I’m going to have to invest in a carbon fiber flask.

  4. cackalackyank - Jan 21, 2014 at 9:56 PM

    Sorry to say but its probably overdue.

    • cohnjusack - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:21 PM

      True. All those mass homicides are baseball parks are an epidemic. MLB is obviously removing the one place where crowds of people conglomerate in crowds for potential terrorist attacks. Thirdly, add in the constant threat of terrorism that we are under in the United States and this policy of putting crowds through metal detectors makes perfect sense.

      • stoutfiles - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:51 PM

        To be fair a sporting event would be extremely easy for a terrorist to attack and kill a large number of people. Just because it hasn’t happened in America yet doesn’t mean it won’t someday. Might as well start checking to be safe, it’s not a big deal.

      • cohnjusack - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:45 AM

        Yep, they could.

        Mostly they don’t.

      • deadeyedesign23 - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:45 AM

        It doesn’t have to be a terrorist it can be anyone carrying something dangerous. It’s not like people don;t get aggressive at sporting events. Sepnd some time at a Dodgers Giants game.

      • cackalackyank - Jan 22, 2014 at 12:26 PM

        Yes, it would be much better to wait until we have a mass shooting at a sports event to start doing it. Unreal.

  5. hojo20 - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:04 PM

    They don’t need it in Miami. I sat in my own section one game last season.

    • tfbuckfutter - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:17 PM

      Miami is the first one to get it.

      Loria is going to sell all your metal for scrap.

      • Old Gator - Jan 22, 2014 at 12:08 AM

        “Your belt buckle sets off the metal detector at the airport and you get searched and busted for DOPE. Lose two turns.”

        – game card from Gilbert Shelton’s Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers Game

      • stex52 - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:24 AM

        Never saw the game, OG. Only read the comics. Wicked sense of humor.

      • Old Gator - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:03 AM

        Furrtunately, you can ackcherley download and print out most of the components of the game here:

        The belt buckle “Bust Card” I mentioned is the one at the lower right hand corner.

  6. penguins87and71 - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:07 PM

    This is stupid. PNC Park already has this and they don’t even scan everyone, in fact they don’t scan most of the people that enter that into the stadium. I’m all in favor of metal detectors and safety, but if your not going to scan everyone what’s the point!

  7. joelgold - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:13 PM

    If my replacement hips set them off like they do at the airport, this will really suck. On second thought, that little feel to my junk on the secondary screening is kind of nice sometimes…..

    • stoicpaisano - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:30 AM

      I agree, speaking as someone with an armadillo in my trousers.

  8. chiadam - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:15 PM

    And this will stop attacks in parking lots…how? Did I miss the rash of attacks occurring inside stadiums?

  9. zzalapski - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:35 PM

    This is A-Rod’s fault, of course.

  10. American of African Descent - Jan 21, 2014 at 10:44 PM

    How are you going to deal with the fact that everyone has a cell phone? And keys? The delays will be a nightmare. Arrive half an hour before game time? No thanks—I’m going to stay at home or watch the game at a bar.

    • NatsLady - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:28 AM

      Went to a hockey game last night with a cellphone and keys. You put them on a table while you are wanded. No biggie.

  11. kymbao - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:21 PM

    Sad but it was only a matter of time. NFL stadiums have been doing this for years.

  12. maximusprime107 - Jan 21, 2014 at 11:46 PM

    The Pepsi Center in Colorado has this and it’s really simple, take your keys and cell phone out of your pocket and put it in a tray and boom you’re done in 5 seconds. People overreact to everything

    • hockeyflow33 - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:06 AM

      I’m sure the person doing the search, who at best, has a GED, will really be your best ally in stopping an attack.

  13. advantageschneider - Jan 22, 2014 at 12:42 AM

    Good thing they don’t have 3D printers that can make non-metal guns that are completely undetectable.

  14. hockeyflow33 - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:03 AM

    It’s ridiculous. If you want to attack a large stadium why would metal detectors stop you? It’s a nonsense approach that is meant to appease idiots.

  15. wingskc - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:18 AM

    Another damn sport I have to stay home and watch. Folks, I’m not going to pay you money to make me stand in line another hour. Find a better way.

  16. joenash72 - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:18 AM

    Will have to swapout the metal weed pipe for a glass one when I go to Safeco this season 😉

    • yahmule - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:12 AM

      Why don’t you just bring edibles?

  17. dan46778 - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:01 AM

    I can tell that most of u would say how come they did not have metal detecters at the gates when a attacked did happen

    • Cris E - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:41 AM

      I was outraged, sir, to find that there were no metal detectors in place to prevent the parking lot assaults, the post-game fights, the drunks falling from their seats. There were fans not cheering properly at the last game I attended, and in many cases I saw empty seats. Metal detectors can fix everything and they should be everywhere. In fact, if there’s a chance that a metal detector can teach you to use punctuation or proofread your posts I’d demand one near your place of posting.

  18. keltictim - Jan 22, 2014 at 7:14 AM

    Oh no I may have to stand in line an extra 5 min! Fenway park has had them for some time now. First of all ball parks have many entrances and people arrive to go in at all different times, I know fenway is one of the smaller parks but I have never seen massive lines, even when the Yankees are in town. Second this is not about one idiot bringing a gun or knife in, this is about terrorism. In case you have a short memory terrorists tried to bomb the Olympics in Atlanta, and they succeeded in bombing the Boston marathon. Soft targets like ballparks are all the rage in the terrorist world. What better way to wage jihad than when we are at our most vulnerable. Will this stop an attack? No. But it could limit casualties in the event one occurs. How many of you belly aching are just complaining for the sake of complaining. This is a small price to pay for a little piece of mind.

    • Cris E - Jan 22, 2014 at 9:47 AM

      In case you have a short memory, both the attacks you mention occurring in crowded public streets where metal detectors would not have made any difference at all. Small prices add up and gradually reduce the quality of life by a thousand little cuts. This is PR-based, not security-based, and it reduces our enjoyment without adding to our well-being.

  19. Gord - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:30 AM

    A little piece of mind? Were you going to games and just sitting there scared before today’s announcement? What a sad existence….

  20. blzr409 - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:37 AM

    The Pirates started doing this mid-season in 2013. They definitely blamed it on new MLB rules, so I’m not sure if they were a test market or they just put it into effect early. It went about as poorly as can be expected. They did little in terms of announcing it in advance, and the first game they put it into effect happened to be Gerrit Cole’s first MLB start where there was a big walk up crowd. A good 1/4 of the fans missed Cole’s first inning because everyone showed up as they would for any other game only to find out they were wanding every person who walked in. Within a few days they cut down to wanding maybe every fifth person.

  21. 4d3fect - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:50 AM

    When they start patdowns I’m outta there.

  22. 4d3fect - Jan 22, 2014 at 8:52 AM

    Oh, and start the Spinal Tap jokes…now.

  23. sportsdrenched - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    Metal Detectors have been around for 20 years and we’re still going to games. I’m not sure this as big a deal as some of you are making it out to be.

  24. keltictim - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:51 AM

    Gord since I grew up in Boston and have been to the marathon several times, yea I have been a little nervous in the past year. D bag. And cris exactly how do you know the bomb in the trash can in Atlanta wasn’t destined to go inside, but the metal detectors made that impossible? At ball games there’s not too many people packed into a small area outside the game as there is on the inside. If it stops one attack I’m good with spending an extra 5 min in line. It’s a metal detector, not a strip search. Why don’t you ask somebody who has lost someone in an attack how they feel about it? If there is something as non invasive as a metal detector that could prevent an attack why not? I like prevention much better than an investigation.

    • Cris E - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:01 PM

      It can’t work. It can’t work. It can’t work.

      By your very example, the hypothetical ATL bomber took a look at the magic metal detectors and blew up people in the street instead. How do you know the BOS bomb wasn’t intended to go inside and kill one person but was forced outside to maim many? It’s not answerable and not helpful to ask such things.

      Everyone would prefer avoiding things like this, but metal detectors play no role in deterrence because large public events like MLB games don’t happen in a small space. There are crowds, lines and public transportation that are almost interchangeable with the game itself as targets, yet can’t be locked down with detectors or wands.

      This is all about security theater, not safety.

  25. keltictim - Jan 22, 2014 at 10:53 AM

    Yea I just re read your first post cris. God forbid I don’t use punctuation properly. Hey did I spell this right D.I.C.K.

    • Cris E - Jan 22, 2014 at 1:01 PM

      You need to learn how the Reply key works too.

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