After a fan died at the Ballpark in Arlington after falling while trying to catch a ball tossed into the stands by Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton, Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen says he's not taking chances.â†µ
"We are all guilty of throwing balls into the stands," McCutchen said. "I throw balls in the stands every inning."â†µ
When asked if he would throw balls into the stands during tonight's game with the Cubs, McCutchen said he was reluctant to take the chance unless it's a short, underhanded toss to a nearby fan.â†µ
"Right now, no," he said. "If there's a ball caught, and I make the third out and I'm right by the warning track, and I can underhand it to somebody, other than that, I'm just not going to do it."â†µ
I'm sure there are lots of entire teams that are now telling their players to stop throwing balls into the stands. From a player's perspective, there's just no point in taking the risk. This won't prevent fans from reaching for foul balls, of course, and so in the wake of this tragedy, I imagine we'll see teams rebuild railings and take other safety precautions as well.