When I see sports fans on TV getting hurt by a flying bat or a foul ball, my first thought is not if they are alright but shaking my head saying “pay attention people”. There was a woman in Boston who learned things the hard way when she was hit by a shattered bat while watching a game at Fenway last week. She had to be taken out of the park on a stretcher with what authorities are calling “life-threatening” injuries.
Not to make light or lessen the seriousness of her injury but I would guarantee you that had she had kept an eye on that bat, she would not have been as badly hurt. I would go as so far as to say she would have walked out of the park on her own. This of course has prompted calls for netting around the seating area. We have seen this at hockey arenas because some dad didn’t remind his son or daughter to be careful of flying pucks that could be headed their way. Safety has overtaken fan enjoyment as top priority.
This is a reminder that when you are coming to see a game of any sport, you have to be aware of the situation at all times. The fan next to you or the usher that showed you to your seat is not responsible for your safety. If it is that important that you need to text your friend, or take a selfie, or chit chat about something unrelated to the game, don’t do it at a sporting event. While you may have paid hundreds or thousands of dollars to sit there, it does not give you exemption of personal responsibility.
Now, that is not to say people will not get hurt if they pay attention at all times. But I would say that there would have to be some serious intention or premeditation if the fan gets hurt despite taking precautions. In other words, you have to convince me that Brett Lawrie intentionally threw the bat into the stands as he was swinging at the pitch. That’s pretty tough to do but knowing the political motivation of my detractors they will go to great lengths to try to prove me wrong.
Here’s another example of where things could have gone wrong if you are not aware of what’s going on in the game. As Don Cherry would say, “keep your head up!”