Devout fans can use authentic statistics such as the following to engage in meaningful dialogues.
Fan No. 1: “Did you know Felix Hernandez is the only pitcher who made 16 consecutive starts, pitched at least seven innings and gave up two or fewer runs?”
Fan No. 2: “Duh. But did you know that three pitchers who started 13 games and lasted fewer than seven games allowed at least three runs?”
READ MORE D.L.: A lifelong goal is inching away.
The downside about getting engrossed in these statistics at the ballpark is that fans may not pay attention to the 9:45 of action on the field. In 1957, Philadelphia’s Richie Ashburn set the record for most foul balls hitting the same fan (2); the first one struck spectator Alice Roth in the face, breaking her nose. As they carted her away for medical attention, Ashburn hit another foul ball, which struck the unfortunate Ms. Roth in the leg, breaking a bone in her knee.
My guess is that she had been distracted by talking to the fan next to her about Cleveland’s Bob Feller, who, in 1939, set the record for throwing the most pitches that were fouled into the stands, striking the pitcher’s mother on Mother’s Day (1).