Were he put in charge of an imaginary crime and punishment division of Major League Baseball, slugger Adam Jones of the Baltimore Orioles knows exactly how he'd penalize fans who run onto the field during a game.
"Anybody who does it, I wish the cops tase the living [stuff] out of them. I wish that.”
Two fans ran onto the field at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday during the eighth inning of the Orioles' 14-5 thumping of the Yankees, with each man being taken down by police near Baltimore players. Simply to be arrested is not enough, said Jones, who has had enough of the interruptions. He told MLB.com that he yelled at the perps:
"I let them know how I felt – obviously, a lot of choice words – because I think it's idiotic for people to run on the field, and I think the punishment needs to be a lot harsher," Jones said. "And they should let us have a shot to kick them with our metal spikes on, because it's stupid.
"You look like [an idiot] when you run on the field. We don't go to any other events. We don't go to other sporting events and do that to their jobs, but they come to ours and do that. I get it, you're drunk and you want to be on SportsCenter. Your [butt] is going to jail with a fine, and you might not be allowed to come back to the ballpark."
Jones had no sympathy for a fan who injured his ankle running on the field at Camden Yards in 2013.
"I was laughing at him. I wish he shattered his femur because it’s stupid"
Stupid, dangerous, obnoxious. All true. Even assuming that Jones' pointed comments were made in the heat of the moment, or even jokingly, he still has a point. While a thorough thrashing with metal spikes might go beyond the point in our society, his sentiment is understandable.
The New York Post reports that fans who interrupt a sporting event in New York face "possible jail time" and a fine up to $25,000. Question: Are they really fining anyone that much, and would it even matter to the apparently drunk person running onto the field based on a dare? Would banning them for life from any major league ballpark do the trick?
What else could we do to stop it? All of the plausible solutions seems to involve violence or unrealistic security.
• Electrified fence or barbed wire around the field could mess up players diving into the stands
• Same with a dragon moat
• Tasing would be especially dangerous during a rain delay, might cause player electrocution
• Giving players extra at-bats for helping police tackle fans would add to amusement, but might violate their contracts/common sense
• Netting around the stands would give "thunderdome" impression, inspiring more violence
• Blood from spike wounds would cause dangerous HAZMAT situation
• Horrifying "reconditioning" treatment would be too much like "A Clockwork Orange."
• Snipers on ballpark roof would intimidate, but also would signal transition of "America's pastime" label from baseball to dystopian people hunting.
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