September 24, 2009
You thought that Milwaukee's Happy Youngster drove an unreasonable bargain for Chris Coghlan's(notes) first home run ball earlier this season?
Well, then be prepared to be even more disgusted after reading about the jerk who caught Matt Carson's(notes) first big league home run in Oakland on Monday and then said he'd only return it to the rookie in exchange for some cold, hard cash.
The fan's rumored demand for the ball?
Try $10,000, an outrageous amount that the career minor leaguer simply wouldn't — and most likely, couldn't — pay.
From the SF Chronicle:
"Kind of a bummer," Carson said. "They authenticated the bat I used, though, so I'll do something with that.
"It would have been nice to have the ball, and I would have been happy to give him a bat and signed it — that's more than a baseball, anyway. But that's OK, I have a souvenir, I'm happy."
I don't begrudge fans going for the dollars when we're talking about big amounts of money — say, Bonds' 756th or McGwire's 70th — but Carson is a 28-year-old right fielder who took seven years to reach the bigs and probably isn't headed to the Hall of Fame.
Honestly, the ball isn't worth $10,000 to anyone and, heck, it probably isn't worth $1,000. Really, the keepsake's only value comes in any sentiment Carson might have toward it and after working so hard to reach his dream of making the big leagues, it's a ball he certainly deserved to have after giving its recipient the traditional payment of some other memorabilia, an autograph and a handshake.
Here's hoping that "fan" comes to his senses and realizes the ball means a lot more to Carson than to his money-minded self.
A big BLS head nod to 3:10 to Joba for the redirect.