There isn’t much to talk about when it comes to a mid-week September series between the Miami Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies. Except for the wild foul balls.
During Wednesday’s game between these two middling organizations, we saw two very different foul ball scenarios. The first involved a server at Marlins Park getting struck by a foul ball in the seventh inning and dropping a beer off her tray. A half-inning later, a fan snagged a foul ball while still holding his beer, and topped it off by giving the ball to a kid.
Let’s start with the waitress. While serving customers down the left field in the bottom of the seventh inning, a screaming opposite-field foul ball from Ichiro manages to make contact with a poor server who couldn’t get out of the way fast enough. Though she wasn’t hurt, the foul ball definitely rattled her.
Then, a half-inning later in the top of the eighth, we have this man — who was also down the left field line— make a gem of a barehanded catch on a hard-hit foul ball by Phillies’ first baseman Tommy Joseph. The man made this grab while falling down, and still kept his drink upright and minimized spillage. This was impressive. While attending a game, I would’ve never been that attentive while walking down the stairs. This guy was ready to go, and he topped it off by handing the ball to a kid and looking like a hero.
If I am the server, I am wondering why that man wasn’t sitting in front of me when that foul ball came in. He should have his seat upgraded just for the effort. He also might save a few waitresses from errant foul balls. As per his shirt, we definitely witnessed.
In all seriousness, fans getting hit by foul balls continues to be an issue, and we don’t really have a surefire way of handling the issue. We have tried increasing net sizes and warning fans. But this just seems inevitable. Hopefully this incident will result in teams warning their staffers about the dangers of foul balls.