Foul Ball and Media lessons from Sully

A lot has been made about that event in Arlington the other day. A ball was tossed into the stands by Rangers first baseman Mitch Moreland. A parent and his son tried to catch it. Instead Sean Leonard caught it and gave it to his fiancee Shannon Moore. And while they grinned and posed with the ball, the kid was crying his eyes out next to them.

All the while it was being captured on the YES Network with Yankees announcer Michael Kay trashing Leonard and Moore. Eventually someone on the Rangers got wind of this and made sure the kid got a ball. While the kid was smiling, Leonard and Moore were oblivious and still in Kay’s doghouse.

Since then, the event when viral on line and Leonard and Moore have become villains. And they have tried to counter attack by demanding an apology from Kay and trying to get sympathy through the media about them getting married soon.

So let me give Leonard and Moore a few pointers.

First of all, why the hell do we know your names now?
How stupid can you be to have people know who you are? You two did interviews? Told people where you were from?

Have you ever been ON the Internet?

People already think you are awful people. And when people think you are awful and go on line, they can attack you with the safety of anonymity. Before you were just two douches at a Rangers game. And today you are Sean Leonard and Shannon Moore.

Nice job. I’m sure people sending you stuff on line will be very sympathetic.
I could post a picture of one of my sons kissing a baby duck and someone would write an obscene comment. (And someone else would go on a Ron Paul rant.)

What part of this seemed smart?

News cycles move so fast that everyone on the planet was going to forget about you before I finished typing this sentence.

So what did you do? You prolonged it by going on TV to tell your side of the story and demand an apology from Michael Kay!

Oooh, I’m sure Michael Kay just wet his pants. He’s been an employee of the YES Network for over a decade which means for a while he was taking orders from George Freaking Steinbrenner. Call it a hunch, but I’m guessing a dopey engaged couple in Texas isn’t going to get an apology from a seasoned New York sports figure.

Secondly, what is to gain from “Getting your story out.” Every time the story is told, people are reminded of who the heck you are and see the video clip again. Nobody will listen to a word you say. They are already swearing at you and calling you unrepeatable names. Do you really think anyone is saying “Wait! Let’s hear what the douchey couple has to say!”?

The best thing you could have done after the game was to lay low, say nothing and in a day or two it would have passed.

The worst thing? Everything you did.

The one positive thing you DID do was you didn’t trash the kid.

As for catching a foul ball, the protocol is quite simple.
You give the ball to the kid. When a ballplayer or a ball boy or girl throws a ball into the stands, they are looking for a kid and will toss it directly to them.

It’s THEIR ball. Fork it over.

I’ve been to more Major League games than I can count. Do you know how many balls I have caught from my first game in 1977 to now?


Do you know where that foul ball is?

I gave it to a kid.

In 1993, I was 21 years old and went to a Reds/Mets game at Shea Stadium. A ball came my way. I got it. I held it up so everyone could see I got it. Then I looked around, found a kid, handed him the ball, and that was that.

If you don’t know you are supposed to do that then why the hell are you at a ballgame?

Finally, let me give you one more tip, Sean and Shannon.
If you two ever have kids together, you will find out that the act of staying at a ballgame with a young kid is tenuous.

It usually is late, they don’t understand the game and they get antsy sitting there.
And as a baseball fan, you hope to enjoy the game as much as you can without the kid becoming unbearable.

Do you know what is unbearable?
Having the kid cry.

Simple solution. Fork the ball over.

It’s not that complicated.

Have a nice wedding. I hope you don’t interfere with anyone trying to catch the bouquet.

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Hey Dumb Ass Rangers Fan…

Did you REALLY think that nobody would catch you throwing that Wiffle Ball onto the field?
You DO know the game is televised with a crap load of cameras, right?

Oh Texans you ARE new to baseball, aren’t you?

I hope we never find out this chumps name.
His 15 minutes of fame are up.
But his night in jail isn’t.

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The steroid era is ending… so hopefully is the excessive celebration era

With pitching dominating and home run totals getting back to normal, we are seeing baseball finally getting out of the steroid era.

And thanks to Kendry Morales and Chris Coghlan we might be saying good bye to an era of stupid celebrations.

Look, I am not against having fun or even a fun spontaneous celebration. But I am glad to see home run celebrations muted a little after Kendry Morales put his career in peril due to a walk off homer leap.

And with the Angels offense sputtering, you think they could use his bat these days?

Not every game ending shot should be treated the same as Joe Carter’s homer.

And I wouldn’t mind seeing people celebrate things like walk off homers a smidge more sincerely.

Wouldn’t it be more interesting to see the players celebrate based on what they would actually do instead of a carefully choreographed dance.

I want to see ball players thrilled at winning on the last swing of the bat, not Riverdance.

The only thing that Morales can take comfort in this year is that Chris Coghlan found a stupider injury in a post game celebration.

He wasn’t even the hero of the game. He was trying to shove a cream pie in the face of Wes Helms. And somehow he busted his knee.

I don’t even know how that is possible.
Did he have the pie on his knee?

But this is a recent tradition that I can do without. The pie in the face may have been funny once or twice, but like the bucket of Gatorade on the winning coach, it has become such a cliche that it is a joyless obligation rather than a fun ritual.

And Heaven forbid a guy be interviewed with a little dignity after getting the game winning hit. I would have love to see these guys pull that on Eddie Murray or Kirk Gibson after a game winning hit.

Or if you are going to do something… be original. The Keystone Cops thought pies in the face were hack.

But something just hit me… the steroid era is ending and dudes are getting hurt celebrating?

Maybe they are getting hurt because they are no longer juiced.

Better not try a forearm bash!

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