Seven weeks after Shannon Stone was killed while tumbling over a railing at Rangers Ballpark, tragedy nearly struck again.
The Associated Press reports that a 24-year-old man was knocked unconscious after falling 21 feet in a stairwell while leaving the stadium. Police are investigating the incident as an accident.
“It doesn’t appear that there’s any foul play that’s involved,” police lieutenant Bobby Mason said after talking to people who were in the man’s group and other witnesses. “There wasn’t any fighting or anything like that going on.”
Mason said his understanding was that the man’s condition was improving after being transported to a hospital. There was some blood in the area where the man fell.
“At this point in time, hopefully it’s going to be better than what we thought when he left,” Mason said.
The indicent happened near the home-plate gate and was out of sight from the field. It was before the end of the game, so the flights of stairs taking fans from the upper deck to ground level were not crowded.
“What we can say for sure is, for whatever reason, he falls from the railing area up there between the third and second landing, and he fell 21 feet,” Mason said.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.