Baseball-related legal disputes

Here’s a topic that will interest all the little shysterlings among you:

It’s surprising how often America’s national pastime, baseball, finds itself snugly entrenched with the country’s second-favorite hobby, litigation. Over the years a number of baseball incidents and disputes have found their way into courtrooms. Here are five examples . . .

. . . During a September 2004 road game against the Oakland Athletics, the Rangers’ bullpen endured the normal merciless heckling from the home fans. The fans allegedly crossed the line, though, when one of them make a crack about Rangers reliever Doug Brocail’s stillborn child, which so enraged Brocail that he rushed to confront the fan. A full-blown melee broke out, and during the fracas the rookie Francisco chucked a folding chair into the stands. The chair hit Jennifer Bueno, whose husband allegedly hurled the disrespectful heckle, in the face, breaking her nose.

Wow, the hecklers in Oakland don’t mess around, do they?

(link via BTF)

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  1. Will said...

    Well, if I’d have been on the jury, neither Brocail nor Francisco would have had anything to worry about. My only advice for Francisco would be to work on his aim.

  2. RP said...

    A comment about a stillborn baby?  That’s just sick.  Francisco’s wrong for throwing the chair, but that was at least done in the heat of the moment, without thinking.  What kind of sick SOB mocks a man about the death of his child?

  3. Reading Movers said...

    I’m with RP, that is definitely a sick move. I don’t really blame Francisco for doing what he did because obviously the topic is really personal to him and the fan definitely crossed the line. On the other hand, when you are in the public eye like that you have to control yourself even when hecklers cross the line.

  4. APBA Guy said...

    This was a couple of years ago. No question the fan incited the Brocail reaction, but it was not Brocail who hurled the metal chair. And it was not the offending fan who was struck and injured by the metal chair.

  5. Ryan said...

    If I recall correctly, the heckler saw the chair coming and ducked.  The chair then popped his wife in the face. I’d like to have a pithy comment about Oakland fans, but I was at that game heckling the players as well.

  6. michael standish said...

    Not many people know that Frankie Francisco was doing some perfectly innocent side work, refining his split-fingered fastchair.

  7. Michael said...

    Near as I can see from a cursory glimpse around the Internets, the “fan made beyond-the-pale remark” claim has yet to be backed up with an actual quote.

    Every time players have encroached upon the stands, it seems it’s because a fan has done (fill in thing that no one would tolerate, obviously). The Dodgers poured into the Wrigley stands en masse to throttle random Cub fans after one supposedly punched Chad Kreuter (in reality, said fan merely stole Kreuter’s cap).

    I’m not calling Brocail a liar, just saying that you’d think I could find some better information if this was corroborated.

    That and I DID find other stories of Brocail getting into it with fans. Here’s one:

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