A game between the Rangers and A's in Texas Thursday night yielded tragic news from off the field. During the second inning, Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton picked up a foul ball and tossed it up into the crowd. A fan leaned a bit over the rail to catch the ball, lost his balance and fell about 20 feet behind a video board. He was pronounced dead less than three hours later.
“We are deeply saddened to learn that the man who fell has passed away as a result of this tragic accident,” Rangers president and CEO Nolan Ryan said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”
Reportedly, the man who fell was a firefighter and was with his son, estimated six to eight years old. (all info above courtesy of Foul Territory, a Rangers blog). A newspaper from the area of Brownwood, Texas has identified the man as an 18-year veteran of the fire department.
The Rangers clubhouse was closed after the game and the A's players were reportedly devastated after having witnessed the fall (Susan Slusser via Twitter). In fact, A's relief pitcher Brad Ziegler said he saw the man was conscious and asking stadium officials to look after his son (Slusser Twitter).
Rangers' manager Ron Washington had this to say about Hamilton, who obviously did nothing wrong by simply trying hook a fan up with a souvenir.
"Josh is fine. Outward he's fine. I guess he's got to deal with it in his own way."
On whether or not Hamilton will play Friday, Washington said: "I think we'll deal with that tomorrow when we get here and see how he feels." (both quotes via Foul Territory)
The video of his fall is here
His landing is not
Edited by MDI, July 07, 2011 - 09:57 PM.