The Miami Marlins and Atlanta Braves played a game Sunday at Fort Bragg, a military base in North Carolina. It was the first MLB game to be played at an active base, and the crowd was filled with military members. Also in that crowd was ballhawk Zack Hample.
Yesterday, I wrote a blog post about Zack Hample, who had complained about being bumped by a fan, causing him to lose a home run ball at Yankee Stadium. Hample, by his own count, got 11 other baseballs at that game, bringing his career total to 9,079—but he was unhappy about what would have been No. 9,080.
The Yankees staged a wild comeback last night, erasing a four-run ninth inning deficit and walking off on a Didi Gregorius home run to beat the Rangers 9-7. But also, who gives a shit about the Yankees? We’re here for the grown man getting snitty over a baseball.
We've met Zack Hample before, and we haven't exactly been kind to him. That's because Hample is a ballhawk—a member of that fraternity of obsessive dudes who hang around ballparks and trample babies whenever Omar Infante flips a baseball into the stands. Nevertheless, Zack reached out to us this morning after…
This is from Anthony Rizzo's first of two home runs yesterday (the Pirates' collapse continues apace). I want to draw your attention not to the play, but to the two gentlemen in center, struggling over that all-important baseball. Who has the moral high ground, and the right to the ball?
The closest I've ever come to catching a foul ball was in Seattle, at the Kingdome. I was sitting dead center behind home plate, about halfway up in the upper deck. The Mariners hitter had his timing right, but just got under it, sending the ball rocketing directly towards our section. A fan maybe four or five rows in…
If you're like me, you've never caught a ball (fair or foul), but always wondered what it felt like. Well, this amazing video is probably the closest we're going to get.
The Happy Youngster might be on his way to law school after reading this one; a Miami family has forced the Phillies to return a home run ball by threat of a lawsuit. America!
You've heard stories about ballhawks, those unwieldy characters who scoop up milestone home run balls only to hold them for ransom from the players who hit them. This is one of those tales.
The most important story in the world right now is that of Emily Monforto, the precious 3-year-old protester who led a bold and courageous anti-ballhawking demonstration at Citizens Bank Park this week.
This web site right here is where the dorkwads of ballhawking and the geekwads of baseball stats meet and do a Vulcan salute. There's enough nerdiness here to power 10 Strat-O-Matic leagues and a new season of Battlestar Galactica.
You see them at every baseball game. The obsessive geeks who stake out batting practice and clamor over beautiful girls just to get random fly balls from third-string catchers. But now they're refining their tactics and upping their demands.
Last Wednesday, Marlins' rookie Chris Coghlan hit his first career homerun. He didn't anticipate trouble getting the ball back. Then again, he also didn't anticipate it being caught by professional ballhawk "THE HAPPY YOUNGSTER"!