The Dangerous Foul Ball

Frankly, I’m surprised this doesn’t happen more often.

Down in Texas, an inning ended, outfielder Josh Hamilton tossed the ball into the stands for the fans, a guy leaned out to get it, lost his balance, fell over the rail and died from his injuries.  Tragic, but completely avoidable.

I’ve never been one to try to get a foul ball at any cost.  Those things hurt and even if you do catch it, if you’re not with your own kid, you’re going to end up giving it to one nearby.  It’s going to mean a whole lot more to them than to you.

I figured if God wanted me to catch a foul ball, he’d make it easy.  So, one game a ball was fouled off and headed my direction.  It perfectly hit the aisle 30-feet to my right, bounced in the air and then landed right in my hand. The cute kid in the next row inherited my good fortune after a quick “happy dance”. I’ll never forget how big his eyes got.

I had one more opportunity.  Sitting on the third base side again, one headed my way again but this time, everyone in our section clammored for it.  It came down, no one knew where it went until I sat down in my seat, looked over and there it was: in the lap of an old fellow sitting next to me.  In the crush of trying to get it, the ball landed in his lap and he didn’t even know it.  Now, the decision: reach into this guy’s crotch and grab the ball…or, option #2, which was saying to him, “Excuse me, sir, but there’s a baseball in your lap.”

#2 without hesitation.

Foul balls can be dangerous.  If you’re meant to get one in the future, you’ll have your opportunity.  It could end up being as close as the lap next to you.

Tim Hunter

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