ARLINGTON, Texas – Cooper Stone, the 6-year-old son of Brownwood firefighter Shannon Stone who passed away from injuries sustained in a fall at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on July 7, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch for Friday’s Game 1 of the ALDS.
Cooper was at the ballpark with his father that night, as Shannon reached over the left field rail to catch a foul ball thrown to him by outfielder Josh Hamilton. Stone fell approximately 20 feet and died later that night.
Following that tragedy, the Rangers announced safety changes that included raising the railings throughout the ballpark. They plan on raising them to 42 inches in the front rows, an increase of as much as 12 inches in certain areas.
The club is still working on a design with some engineering firms and plans on having the new rails installed this offseason.
The club is also planning to erect a statue of Shannon and Cooper at the ballpark.
"I think we want to have a memorial for Shannon Stone and I want the fans when they come in to see it and remember Shannon and Cooper and the fact that they represent what I think we're about and that's making memories for our fans and family,” Rangers CEO Nolan Ryan said on Aug. 10 when the announcement was made.