Perhaps you caught me on the news last night.
You may have seen my successful slide into second base at Tropicana Field while my brother was being arrested by Devil Rays security. We decided to join a long line of morons who stormed the field, interrupting play for a front-page story and a free misdemeanor.
OK, so that wasn’t me, but you get the idea. Wednesday’s game marked the second time in consecutive games that fans like me have charged Tropicana Field, sparking an increase in security.
Personally, I can’t understand the idea of being arrested for being a moron. While the average citizen might laugh at the offense of someone charging the field, it has gotten out of hand as of late.
Some cases of streaking or charging the field do cause a few laughs.
The Super Bowl Streaker, a.k.a. Mark Roberts, managed to make his way onto the field by impersonating a referee during Super Bowl XXXVIII. Then, just before the second half began, he stripped off his ref outfit and danced a jig before Patriots linebacker Matt Chatham leveled the snot out of the imposter.
Over the past two years, fans have accumulated a bad reputation for their actions against athletes and umpires.
For instance, a fan sparked the notorious brawl in Detroit. Aptly named “The Malice at the Palace,” it resulted in many fans being charged with misdemeanors and the suspensions of Indiana Pacer players Ron Artest, Stephen Jackson and Jermaine O’Neal. Detroit’s Ben Wallace was also benched six games for his participation in the chaos.
The manner in which the brawl escalated caused major concerns and an elevated level of security at the Palace. But idiot fans still found a way to disrupt. When the Pacers visited Detroit for the first time since the brawl, multiple bomb threats were called in, delaying the game for more than two hours.
Fans are simply out of control.
In September of 2003, a father-and-son duo leaped the walls of Comisky Park in Chicago to jump Kansas City Royals first-base coach Tom Gamboa, who sustained multiple cuts and bruises and, according to a report on www.thewmurchannel.com , still has minor hearing loss in his right ear. What’s worse, a similar case occurred at Comisky less than a year later when a fan attempted to tackle an umpire after leaping from the stands. Clearly, fan violence has escalated to an intolerable level.
Be it insanity or a craving for 15 minutes of fame, fans should know their place. Running on the field is the recipe for a cheap clothesline and a night in jail.
At any rate, I don’t buy a ticket to a game to see a naked, overweight man running for dear life amongst a sea of authority. So the next time you consider charging the field, think about the game and the legacy you may be tarnishing.