This Week in Foul Balls: Joe Girardi is a Class Act & Other Stories from Week 2 (Week 2: April 10 – 16)

Welcome back to the 2017 season version of “TWIFB Notes” (This Week in Foul Balls). In this weekly post, I look at the best and worst foul ball moments in Major League Baseball…and sometimes Minor League Baseball…and sometimes softball and high school baseball.

First, our running total of foul ball hits in the facial area, or what I call “Foul Ball Facials”, as they are reported ONLY on Twitter. This is the count after two full weeks of play:

  • 24 MLB fans hit in head area in 2 weeks
  • 9 admit being distracted by phone (37.5%)
  • 3 were ricochets
  • 5 dove for a foul ball & hurt themselves

Note that 37.5% of those hit in the face—via ONLY Twitter reports—admitted they were distracted by their phone. That should speak for itself.

The Best

This guy. This guy was calm, cool and collected. At last week’s Boston Red Sox – Baltimore Orioles game, this Red Sox fan barely moved. It certainly did seem as though it was fate that brought that Dustin Pedroia ball to him.

Check out this “sweet” snag by a fan at the Washington Nationals – Philapdelphia Phillies game! Okay. It’s actually weak. I’m making fun of MLB for posting it saying it’s a great play. The guy got lucky. See how he’s moving away from the ball, scared of it? He basically got lucky. But it’s still cool, so I’m leaving him here. 

New York Yankees’ Joe Girardi is one friggin’ class act! This is one of the, perhaps THE most awesome thing any skipper’s done for a player. Kyle Higashioka was brought up to replace an injured Gary Sanchez. Here’s the direct quote about what happened, “In the ninth inning a foul ball landed behind the Yankees dugout, and Girardi made a deal with the person who caught it: two game-used balls for the foul ball. The deal was completed, and Girardi saved it for the catcher who spent nine years in the organization without sniffing the big leagues until Gary Sanchez got hurt Saturday in Baltimore, and now will miss a month.” Higashioka hadn’t had an at-bat in the game. So Joe decided to get the kid a souvenir. Well played Girardi.

Another one where I’m torn between Best, Worst or Honorable Mention. You decide:

Given she missed the ball, then stumbled getting it and celebrated as though she did some great catch, she’d get “Worse” nod. BUT there’s that whole stumbling and not losing all of her drink. THAT has to count for something. For me, it’s what edges her into the “Best” section. Notice it’s the Red Sox and Orioles again?

 

The Worst

I’m all for fans snagging foul balls, as anyone who knows me knows. But I can’t, in good conscience, award the “Best” moniker to Kansas City’s mayor, Sly James. The reason? He gave the ball to the co-founder of H.R. Block instead of a kid. It’s actually shameful. If you’re going to give a ball away, ESPECIALLY if you’re the mayor attending a Kansas City Royals game, you should be politicking and give it to a kid. It’s really THAT simple. So, since he gave it to a millionaire, he earns a “Worst” placing. Dude is a dud. And with a name like “Sly” how can you trust him anyway?

 

Whataburger Field…which should be called Whatabooger Field now…decided to add netting. The Corpus Christi Hooks play there. Ugh. Oh. And while I’m on netting, boo to the Sky Sox who’ve done it too.

 

Honorable Mentions

Dale Scott. The poor guy can’t seem to catch a beak when it comes to foul tips. For at least the second time Umpire Dale Scott got nailed in the head by a foul tip that with so much force it caused another concussion.

This time he was rolled off the Rogers Centre field during the Baltimore Orioles – Toronto Blue Jays game. I’m seeing a pattern forming with the Orioles.

 

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