Our good friends over at the totally still fun to watch sports network called ESPN posted this video of a fan catching a foul ball the other night.
Had to link the guy’s girlfriend’s tweet because ESPN didn’t tweet it out. But anyway, when I originally saw this clip on Facebook, the comments were a mix of “what a dick not giving the kid the ball!” and “good! We shouldn’t be encouraging another participation trophy generation!”, along with the occasional asshole making some kind of reference to the 2016 election. Here’s my personal take.
It’s one thing if the guy was jostling for the ball with the kid and took it from him when he had a legitimate shot at it. I think if that’s the case, even if you catch the ball, you give it to the kid. We already saw the biggest hardo of the year in May when a Braves security guard took a ball from a young boy.
Don’t get me wrong, the dad definitely deserved to be thrown out, you can’t just go reaching onto the field and grabbing balls still in play. But why take the ball right out of a little kid’s hands?
Anyway, back to the play on Saturday. Not only did this little kid have no chance at the ball, he wasn’t even sitting in the same SECTION. The kid is like 7 seats and a stairwell away from the guy. Just because he walks over crying afterwards means he has to give up the ball? If a guy buys a popcorn and the kid walks up to him crying afterwards, would he have to give him that too?
Look, I’m not trying to be insensitive to the kid. Obviously I don’t want him to be upset, especially at a baseball game. But when you’re at a game, everyone is kind of a kid again. Every time I set foot into a ballpark, my mind immediately turns to memories of games when I was little with my Dad. Catching a foul ball is something every kid dreams of. I’ve been going to games since I was 3, and I’ve never caught an in-game foul ball during a Major League game. Not only did this guy get one, but with an impressive one-handed catch too, all without spilling a sip of his drink. Granted, only like 50 people go to A’s home games so there’s a lot less competition for foul balls, but still a great catch.
And who knows? Maybe this guy is the same way as me. Maybe he wants the ball because he plans on sharing it with his own kids one day. I can only hope that one day my kids enjoy going to games with me the same way my brother and I love to go with my Dad. Going to baseball games in the summer is a blessing, America’s pastime. Whether or not you catch a foul ball, you should feel lucky just to experience it.
PS- I take back everything I said if this guy is just some jerkoff who doesn’t care about baseball. I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt since he’s got the hat, but if he’s one of those guys that got free tickets from work and spends the entire game refreshing his Twitter feed, no shot he deserves a foul ball.