(AP, MLB, BLS Illustration)
Security! We got another one.
Whenever a goofball fan runs on the playing field during a Major League Baseball game, ballpark security is supposed to surround him in a big circle and squeeze until the trespasser is surrounded. Ballplayers have been told to stay away and, presumably, the same goes for umpires, but Jeff Kellogg apparently got tired of waiting Friday night at a Baltimore Orioles game.
After a shirtless fan caused a delay at Camden Yards by running all over, sliding into home and popping up to run some more, Kellogg took action by tackling him. The umpire received a standing ovation from the crowd which, it should be noted, also had been encouraging the fan to elude authorities.
Watch it, via citizen video:
It was the fourth time this season a fan delayed a game at Camden Yards (see also: the since-banned "Batman"), and Orioles outfielder Adam Jones told the Baltimore Sun that he's had enough. He's calling for the dogs — literally.
"I'm sick and tired of these guys running on the field, man. I said let's get a canine, something. A K-9 [unit] would be fine."
Perhaps Jones' most electric comment was the idea that anyone who runs onto the field should be tased.
"I'd [advocate] that people get tased. I'd enjoy that. You don't run on the field and just disturb a game that's going on. It's private property, and I'm sick and tired."
Ah, the taser, a popular form of crowd control in recent seasons. I don't disagree with Jones that these delays are annoying and unfair. Bringing more police dogs to the park certainly would give fans pause, even drunk ones, though it might be a bit terrifying for the kiddies to watch a pack of German Shepherds tackling some dope with their fangs.
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And if the umpire has to make a play, like we're in a "Naked Gun" movie, then security obviously needs to move more quickly. Perhaps the Orioles should do more than banning the fan, like they did with the Batman dude. Make the legal penalty bigger. More jail time. Heftier fines. Some kind of additional public embarrassment. If we're talking about a fan who's just running around, being a nuisance, discipline can be applied without resorting to violence just because we're all ready to play ball.
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