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Royals fan hit in eye with hot dog; suit goes to state Supreme Court

SportsBaseballProfessional BaseballKansas City RoyalsChicago CubsSan Diego PadresAdam Eaton

A Kansas man was smacked in the eye by a hot dog at a Royals baseball game, and his lawsuit has gone all the way to the state Supreme Court.

Good thing it wasn't a baseball -- for more than the obvious reasons.  If it's a foul ball or a broken bat, the "baseball rule" dictates that the team is protected from having to pay out, as the Associated Press explains. The fan is assuming that risk when he enters the stadium. 

The waiver of liability is usually printed on the back of your baseball ticket, FindLaw notes.

But John Coomer's lawyer says he wasn't expecting Kansas City Royals mascot Sluggerrr to hurl -- from behind his back -- the foil-wrapped package. Boom. Detached retina, two surgeries, $4,800 in medical costs.

One court sided with the Royals, saying Coomer was at fault because he wasn't paying attention. An appeals court said, hey, you can be on the lookout for a baseball, but for a hot dog? No way.

"The risk of being hit in the face by a hot dog is not a well-known incidental risk of attending a baseball game," the court stated.

So it went to the Missouri Supreme Court in September.  The court hasn't said when a ruling will be issued. So Coomer, 53, is waiting. He's asked for more than $20,000, though the AP says the actual amount he's seeking is probably much more than that.

This is one of the weirder injuries this baseball fan has heard of. But bizarre injuries to players aren't hard to find. Here are a few from MLB.com: In 2001, Adam Eaton missed a start for the San Diego Padres because he stabbed himself with a paring knife while trying to open a DVD.

Former pro infielder Bret Barberie missed a game when he was with the Cubs due to squirting chili juice in his eye.

Former third baseman Wade Boggs hurt himself trying to take off his cowboy boots. One got stuck, so he stood up and tried to yank it off, lost his balance and fell into a couch, suffering a bruised ribcage.

Read more here at the MLB site.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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