Wrigley may not be deemed safe to play

Updated: July 29, 2004, 11:52 PM ET
Associated Press

CHICAGO -- City officials on Thursday said they needed more information from the Chicago Cubs before deciding whether it's safe to play a game at Wrigley Field on Friday.

On Thursday, workers at the stadium continued putting up netting to protect fans from falling chunks of concrete.

Chicago Buildings Commissioner Stan Kaderbek said in a statement that he had met with team officials and asked for clarification on a safety inspection report the Cubs submitted to the city.

"If the items needing clarifications have been addressed, and we anticipate they will be, we will concur that it's safe to play at Wrigley Field," Kaderbek said.

The Cubs are scheduled to host the Philadelphia Phillies on Friday afternoon.

The city can prevent the game at the 90-year-old ballpark if the netting isn't fully installed or if they conclude it doesn't adequately protect fans.

Chicago Cubs president Andy MacPhail said in a statement that he anticipated the netting would be installed and that the team's structural engineer would submit a final report to city officials by late Thursday.

There have been three reports of falling concrete at the stadium since June. No injuries have been reported.

A fan reported to the city June 9 seeing the first piece of concrete fall along the first base side of the park. The fan said the debris was the size of a small brick.

The second piece of falling concrete was reported by a man who said the chunk, measuring about 6 inches long and 3 inches thick, nearly struck his 5-year-old son at a July 16 game.

A Wrigley Field employee found a third piece of concrete July 21, Cubs officials said. That piece was about the size of the palm of a hand.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press