The Baseball Desert

Friday, April 15, 2005

Swing and a miss

This is being talked about all over the place.

Having looked at the replays of the incident, it's hard to tell just what the fuckwit 'fan' in question was trying to do. Maybe we'll find out one day, maybe not, but I would venture to suggest that above and beyond the questions of aggressive behaviour, assault, criminal charges etc. there's a simple baseball question to be asked, so I'll ask it:

Dear fuckwit anonymous 'fan',

If your team is up by one measly run in the eighth inning of a very tight ballgame with two men on base and your catcher hits a ball which bobbles around in the treacherous right-field corner at Fenway, why in God's name would you reach out and try to interfere with the ball / the right fielder [delete as appropriate]? You touch the ball, it's a ground-rule double (rather than the triple Varitek ended up with) and the course of the game is altered. (And don't tell me that one game makes no difference over the course of a season).

With hindsight (oh hindsight - how we love your 20/20 vision), the play didn't alter the outcome of the game, but that's not really the point, is it? No matter how close you are to the action (and in right field at Fenway, you're pretty close) you're still defined as a spectator, not a player. If Joe Torre needs someone new to patrol right field, I'm sure he'll give you a call; in the meantime, finish your beer, piss off and let the rest of us get on with the business of watching the game.