Fan Who Was Hit by Foul Ball Wins Lawsuit

Delbert Yates Jr. won a rare injury lawsuit against a baseball team when a Cook County Circuit Court jury awarded him $67,500 for being hit in the eye by a foul ball off the bat of the Chicago Cubs’ Leon Durham in 1983.

The case of Yates, a 10-year-old from Valparaiso, Ind., revived the question of how far a baseball club should go to protect fans.

“I’m happy about the whole thing because other people got injuries from foul balls and nobody got anything out of it before,” said Yates, now 16.

The boy’s attorney, Mario Cirignani, said it is the first verdict of its kind against a Chicago major league baseball team. He was seeking $75,000 in damages.


Cub attorney William Cremer said the club would appeal the verdict.