This blog launched as “Circling the Bases” in April 2009. Not long after that we posted a story about how a man was struck in the eye by a hot dog tossed by Sluggerrr, the Kansas City Royals mascot, and detached his retina. All of that seems like ages and ages ago. Yet, the legal case that resulted from that continues on, pushing six years later.
Yesterday a jury ruled that neither the team nor the mascot were at fault for the plaintiff’s injuries as a fan in the stands assumes the risk of flying objects, hot dogs included. This is now the second time a jury has so ruled. The first time was back in 2011. In 2013 an appeals court reversed that, saying that foul balls are one thing, mascots throwing hot dogs another. Last June the Supreme Court reversed that, ruling in favor of the fan and remanding the case for a new trial, which concluded yesterday. Of course now, one assumes, the fan will appeal agin and we’ll have another 2-3 years of this.
Which is to say that this will easily be the longest-covered story in the history of CTB/HBT once it’s all said and done. Players will have come up through the minors, made their mark in the bigs and then subsequently retired in the time it will take to resolve the old hot dog-to-the-eye case.