Last night, while I was on the phone with an old friend getting caught up on things, I learned that a fan had been killed at The Ballpark in Arlington while trying to catch a baseball in the stands on Friday night.
Over the years, there have been a number of fans who have lost their lives at both major league and minor league ballparks.
However, until this morning, I was unaware that Shannon Stone fell over the railing after Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton tossed him a ball he wanted to give to his son. (H/T Greg Pollowitz at National Review.)
This certainly put things into a different light. It isn’t to say that the circumstances surrounding the deaths of other fans at baseball games aren’t less tragic but it certainly touches a raw nerve.
Stone, of course, wanted the ball for his son. That took me back to May 2005. I was at the Rogers Centre in Toronto with my Dad and older brother for a game between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Chicago White Sox. Blue Jay infielders Eric Hinske and Orlando Hudson were playing catch down the first base line. We are sitting a dozen or so rows back. Dad calls out to Hinske, “Hey Eric!!!” and motions to him to throw the ball. Hinske tosses the ball and Dad makes a barehanded catch. He then hands me the ball. I was 32-years-old at the time, a grown man. And yet my Dad wanted me to have a baseball. And yes, I still have that ball.
I shudder at the thought of what would have happened had my Dad had been either killed or seriously injured under those set of circumstances. Now imagine how a six-year-old boy must feel.
Notice to Readers: The American Spectator and Spectator World are marks used by independent publishing companies that are not affiliated in any way. If you are looking for The Spectator World please click on the following link: https://thespectator.com/world.