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When Fans Attack — Part II
Immediate threats

Other parts in this series:
  When Fans Attack — Part I — Potentially dangerous spectators
  When Fans Attack — Part II — Immediate threats

Two different approaches

A spectator has never attacked me, but I watched it happen to other umpires on two separate occasions. There was a pair of common themes to each encounter. In both cases, the spectator's child was directly involved in a close play, and the umpire made a ruling against that player. Second, the umpire and spectator took part in heated, verbal exchanges over an extended period of time.

One for the money ...

I spoke briefly in Part I about an encounter I once witnessed in which an irritated spectator took the field and grabbed an umpire by the throat. I was a casual observer because my young cousin was participating in the game. The spectator was irked by a call earlier in the game when the umpire made a ruling against the fan's daughter. The umpire took away what would have been the girl's first home run by calling her out on a close play at home. It was a fast play and could have gone either way.


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