By Blaidd Drwg
The River City Rascals of the independent Frontier League, instituted and then reversed a rather interesting policy concerning players and coaches tossing balls into the stands.
From ESPN.com (this is the entire piece):
A unique policy devised by a baseball club in the independent Frontier League was quickly reversed after commenters on social media panned the move.
The club, the River City Rascals, which plays in O’Fallon, Missouri, posted a sign in its home dugout that said that, as of yesterday, players and coaches would be charged for throwing balls into the stands.
“Players and coaches will now be fined $5 for each ball that is tossed into the stands,” the sign read. “We ask that you return every ball back to the dugout, including at the end of innings and games.”
The notice warned team personnel that the $5 would be taken directly out of their paycheck and that it was ownership’s wishes that this was not discussed with fans.
But after negative reaction over taking away a common fan friendly practice filled Facebook and Twitter on Wednesday night, a club official acknowledged it reversed course by the morning.
“We have reversed it, but won’t be discussing it any further at ownership’s request,” said the team’s general manager Dan Dial.
The 14 Teams in the Frontier League have a $75,000 salary cap for a 24-man roster, which means players are earning as little as $600 and as much as $1,600 a month. They are subsidized with meal money and free housing.
I know that independent teams operate on a shoestring budget, but that is beyond silly. Did they think that this was the 1910’s, not the 2010’s, where games would routinely use the same ball for the whole game?
2 thoughts on “Tossing a Ball to the Fans”
“…and that it was ownership’s wishes that this was not discussed with fans.”
Might as well have signed it “Cheap, money-grubbing bastards.”
Well, baseball is the only sport I can think of where fans don’t return stray equipment back to the playing field.
That, and the tickets almost certainly cost less than the baseballs.
But I agree, it’s still very uncool to forbid tossing the fans a ball.