What are some fans thinking? Don’t touch that ball!

Just ask Moises Alou if fan interference is a game-changer.

I have been a baseball fan basically since birth. I enjoy the little things about the game. The positioning of a shortstop with a runner on second base and a bunt attempt, the type of pitch that is thrown to a power hitter in a one-ball, two-strike count, and the call to play the “infield up” are things that interest me. With that being said, there is one thing I absolutely hate about baseball: fans interfering with live baseballs.

In recent years, there have been many examples of fans with such a lust for a material object, aka an official baseball, that their actions have directly impacted results of games. I understand the glamor and allure of being able to keep a direct link to a game, but must we forget that our actions could have a negative impact?

I’m sure that it’s cool to go home and tell your girlfriend that you caught a Derek Jeter-hit baseball. It might even make you look like a superstar in her eyes, but in the end, a fan is just that, a fan. There is no need put yourself into a position that could cost a player or a team something that they have worked years for. I will go on record saying that any person who interferes with a ball in play should be kicked out of the stadium for life, no matter what the situation is. This may sound extreme, but I’ve really had enough.

After a fan interfered with a possible home run by Hunter Pence recently, I thought to myself that there should be rules for this. I came up with a guide for fans to follow in case of this situation. Here are 10 rules for every foul-ball-hungry fan to follow:

  1. Do not reach into fair territory for any reason!
  2. Do not use your hat as a glove. You are a man. Act like one, and catch it with your hands.
  3. Never take the ball away from a little kid.
  4. Always look at the umpire on balls up the line.
  5. If you catch an opponent’s home run and decide to throw it back on to the field, do not throw it at another team’s player.
  6. Do not push or shove people for the ball … it’s only a baseball.
  7. Even if you are a fan of the team that may be hitting a home run, do not take the chance of reaching over the wall. Looking like the goat is 10-times worse than being the hero.
  8. If you are on a date or have a kid with you, then you give the girl or the kid the ball after you catch it. Makes you look like a class act.
  9. If you are holding a beer, either chug it before the ball gets to you or place it down and attempt the catch. I know this is a difficult task, but it is better than looking like a wet loser if you spill your beer and don’t make the catch.
  10. Respect the game. Even if you are a new fan to the team, it is important to understand that your “mistake” may cause a volcano of emotions from players (think Moises Alou) and even other fans (think all Cubs fans).

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