Foul balls - give them to kids or not?

I caught a ball that Curt Schilling fouled off of Maddux at the Vet a few years back. Gave it to a ~8 year old little dude in a Phillies hat.

I might keep, say, a Thome home run ball, though, if it came to me and I didn’t go all head over heels into somebody’s beer to steal it. Ahh, even then, if there was a kid around who had his glove and everything, I’d give it up. What the hell, a baseball’s not really gonna make me happy, but it’ll make a kid’s week.

I also caught a foul ball. I was at a Mets game around 1997 with some former coworkers and a foul ball came our way. I didn’t have to fight or push anyone out of the way and caught it bare handed. I got the usual applause for the crowd and showed it to my coworkers. After getting it back I looked at it and said to myself “What the hell am I going to do with this baseball”. The answer was “Not a damn thing”. I rememered behind me were two kids (between 5 and 8)with their dad. I turned around handed it to the dad and said to the kids “don’t fight over it its for both of you”.

Little did I know that a girl from my neighborhood was a section over with her boyfriend at the time. She was quite impressed with my gesture. To this day whenever she sees me she brings it up. It has gotten me good points when she mentions it to her other girl friends too.

I do agree though. If it was a valuable HR ball I wouldn’t give it to a kid. 99.999% of foul balls hit by anyone are worthless. Of course Bartman’s ball was a different story.

I’d give it up. Although I may keep a homerun ball.

I caught a foul ball at a game several ago that hit a little kids knee first. It was really moving and the kid (about 5) wasn’t looking. It drilled him on the knee cap and came right for my head. I was fortunate enough to catch it before it hit me. The kid had one of those “WTF just hit me looks” and started screaming. The mother, instead of checking on the child, comes running up to me yelling that the ball is hers because it hit her kid. I had every intention of giving it to the kid before she said anything but I briefly entertained the thought of bouncing it off her forehead first. Is the ball really more important than your childs well being? :rolleyes:

How many points before you can redeem them for a hummer?

Most likely, my 5-year old son will be sitting next to me, so I would give it to him.

Forty years of going to major league ball games, never been close to getting a ball. If it comes my way, I keep it. Let the kid wait forty years like I did. If I can leap or reach higher because of my height, that’s part of the foul ball game. They have the advantage of being able to scurry under seats, but I can reach better. The ball goes to whoever gets to exploit his advantage. If I were to get a SECOND ball, then I’d find a kid that looks like a genuine baseball fan.

You won’t make any friends when you do this.
*ARLINGTON, Texas - A 4-year-old boy who lost a foul ball to a not-so-grown-up adult is getting a windfall worthy of a game-winning home run hitter. A man sitting behind Nick O’Brien at a Texas Rangers baseball game Sunday knocked the boy against the seats as he dived to get a foul ball. Fans started chanting “Give him the ball!” but the man wouldn’t give it up. *

But he’s not saying he’s going to knock anyone down, or even make a physical struggle out of, like the guy at the Ranger’s game did (which has been mentioned several times in this thread already). The circumstances given in the OP specifically exclude that sort of behavior - we’re talking about everyone having an equal chance at the ball, and there’s no shoving involved.

Doh! Sorry about that.

[gettting slightly off topic]

I remember going to Mesa Arizona several years ago to watch the Cubs in spring training games. My dad had bought the tickets in advance and we had two extras. It turned out that there was a big demand for tickets the day of the game. As we were driving to the park, we saw people holding signs offering money for tickets, probably 4 or 5 times face value. I mentioned it to my dad several times, and he ignored me. When we finally got to the park, we had passed up probably 20 opportunities to sell the extra tickets. Walking towards the gate, he saw a teenage couple who were obviously looking for tickets. They didn’t look as if they had much hope of getting to see the game. My dad just gave them the tickets and made their day.

That left an impression on me. I’ll always remember it, and I think that I’d give the ball to the kid if I caught one (which isn’t likely. Those balls are coming in fast, and I’m not going to risk getting hurt to get a ball that I could buy for $10 or so. Yeah, I’m a wimp.)

Since my first game when I was eight years old, I knew that most of the thrill of getting a baseball was the actual getting. People hand me baseballs all the time, when I play, or to put away, or whatever. I didn’t bring my glove and put up with the drunk Dodger fan behind me for someone to hand me a baseball. I’m not gonna hurt anyone going for a ball, but it’s dog-eat-dog, and that’s half the fun. I’m keeping it.

You guys don’t remember the Budweiser commercial? There were three guys sitting next to each other, an old dude and two 30-ish dudes. The old guy is sitting, holding an old-school mitt and talking about how he feels that the game-winning homer is going to come directly at him. Boy, can he feel it. The other two guys just smile.

I don’t recall the rest of the setup of the commercial (for all I know it was bottom of the ninth, bases loaded, two outs, full count, home team’s down by three) and the ball gets hit right to our protagonists. The old guy’s eyes light up as everone in the section reaches for the ball and one of the 30-ish guys catches it.

And promptly sticks it into the old guy’s glove. The old guy either sees Christ or wets himself and we cut to the two guys talking, Guy #1 says, "that was a once-in-a-lifetime event and guy #2 says (the catcher), “yeah, I know.” Shot of them walking into the sunset, old guy happy and probably going home to die.

I don’t know if that helps.

At a MLB game a couple of years ago a foul ball was hit into the outfield corner. A couple of kids (brohter and sister around 7-9 years old) had tried to catch the ball with the mitts they had brought. It wasn’t close enough to reach, but the outfielder saw them standing at the railing an lobbed it to the boy. Obviously inexperienced with the mitt (or the mitt being too big for his hands) the ball went into the mitt and dribbled out onto the stairs. An old lady (60’s?) sitting beside the stairs watches the action and makes a dynamic swoop and rescues the ball! She waves it proudly and stuffs it in her purse. The kids start crying and the parents come down to negotiate with her, but nothing doing. The crowd in the area start booing, but to no avail. By the end of the inning, a bat boy ran down and gave the kid another ball.

The selfish attitude of this old bitty ruined the game for me.

Without hesitation, I’d give it to the kid. Frankly, I don’t give a damn about foul balls. Then again, it could be because I’ve caught more than my fair share as a kid. (Once I caught five in two consecutive games at old Comiskey. That’s what sitting behind home plate in the upper deck during under-10,000 attendences will do to you.) Heck, if you really want a ball that much, just show up to batting practice. Eventually one will come your way.

Whatever happened to being a gentleman?

What does being a gentleman have to do with it? Everyone had an equal chance to catch the ball.

Missed that part in the OP, but still, even had I never caught a foul ball, I’d give it to the kid. Yes, it’s gentlemanly. I don’t care if everyone has a fair chance at the ball. I don’t race grannies to empty seats on the bus. I, mean, hey, everyone had a fair shot at it, right? I give up my seat to old men, ladies and children routinely. Sure, I have every right to sit, but I like to afford certain comforts to children and the elderly.

Sorry, I’ll just stick to my apparently outdated notions of chivalrous behavior.

I’ve never caught a ball at a major league game. I’d still give it to a kid. It’s a BASEBALL, for Christ’s sake, not gold bullion. What am I gonna do with a baseball? I already have a bunch of baseballs I bought myself. Seeing a kid’s face light up would be worth it a thousand times over.

I wouldn’t care about a foul ball. I’d give it to a kid (or my kid). If there’s money involved we’d have a different story. If number 756 from Barry Bonds is coming my way, then I don’t care who or what gets knocked over. Dio’s gonna get paid.

What are you all looking at? You know you’d do the same. :cool:

I agree with RickJay. It’s just a ball. Like I said in the pit thread, who cares that you caught a foul ball. Or a live ball, for that matter. It will impress no one.

I would like to catch one (never came close to one). But I will always try to catch a ball in the air. Once it’s caught, I throw it back. It has no value.

I would never catch a ball at a major league game, and then give it to some kid.

The fact is that I would probably never go to a major league baseball game, and if I did, and by some odd chance a big easy fly ball came down right in my breadbasket, and for some inexplicable reason I actually happened to be wearing a fielders mitt, well then,

I would drop that sucker, just like every other easy fly ball that ever came my way, over fifty years of baseball misery!

You cannot imagine how much I despise baseball. Source of endless hours of emotional abuse in my childhood, where all my friends, even the girls could throw, hit, and catch better than I. My sons never wanted to play catch with me. A good thing, too, cause I don’t catch. I drop. I muff. I hurt my fingers. I now unabasedly run from ground balls.


Well, if Bonds’s 756th is coming towards me, that ball can pay my mortgage, all my debts, my car loan, and set my children up in education, clothes and good schools forever. (Such a baseball would probably I’d have a moral responsibility to my family to keep it and sell it for every penny I could get for it.

I’m pretty sure the discussion is limited to baseball that don’t carry enormous cash value.