Let's go Tort Sox -- thanks to the Natster for sending me this local legal/baseball story. Six years ago, a woman was hit in the face with a foul ball at Fenway Park, estimated to be traveling 90mph off the bat of Darren Lewis. She suffered serious facial injuries, pain and headaches, lost work -- and it was only the second time in her life she'd been to a ballgame. Yesterday, a panel ruled her suit against the Sox should not go forward, because it's an "obvious danger" that foul balls can come rocketing into the seats.
Now, this is a particularly interesting scenario, given that the Red Sox had a pitcher, Bryce Florie, hit in the face with a line drive not to long ago -- severely injuring him and ending his career. Of course, Florie was an employee (or at least an independent contractor), and the fan is merely a licensee to a seat in the park. Maybe it's not "fair" in the broad, schoolyard sense that this woman gets no compensation, but if the Sox were liable for continually warning all 35,000 fans at every game against all the possible dangers of the ballpark -- from flying balls and bats to drunken fans falling and brawling to pigeon poop to slipping on a peanut shell -- they'd go out of business in a week from all the lawsuits. I know that at LeLacheur Park in Lowell, where many if not most fans are little kids and the park is very small, there are announcements throughout the game for people to watch out for foul balls -- and still people let their kids horse around and don't watch the game for long periods. Hello, it's called baseBALL for a reason! Caveat spectator, I say.