When Fans Attack
September 22, 2002
Major League Baseball had to find someway of putting the fans back in their place. During the summer, as the rumors of a strike swirled, fans criticized and ridiculed the spoiled, greedy players and owners. What better way to accomplish this humbling then to have two idiot fans (a father and his son, in keeping with elemental baseball myths) attack a man who has made professional baseball his life? The attackers, obviously "Manchurian candidates", have, in one swift moment, turned the tables around. Baseball can now focus on the "fan problem" and the safety of its players and coaches.
The Ligues: Father & Son
On Thursday September 19, William Ligue, Jr. and his son, both shirtless, jumped out of the stands at Comiskey Park and attacked Tom Gamboa, first-base coach for the Kansas City Royals. It was the top of the ninth inning in a game between the Chicago White Sox and the visiting Royals. The Royals' entire dugout cleared and the bullpen occupants rushed in from right field. Several players jumped on the attacking fans. Punches were exchanged, but it was not clear which players threw them. Security came on the field and tried to break it up, but it was several minutes before order was restored. Eventually the two fans were escorted off the field in handcuffs. A White Sox trainer attended to Gamboa. He had a large cut on his forehead, and was holding a towel to his face. Nevertheless Gamboa was able to walk off the field unassisted. The two fans were handcuffed and taken from Comiskey to the District 9 police station at 35th Street and Lowe Avenue in Chicago.
On Saturday William Ligue, 34, was charged with a felony count of aggravated battery in a public place of amusement and held on $200,000 bail. His son, 15, was initially released to his mother. Later he was taken to a juvenile detention center and charged with two juvenile counts of aggravated battery, one for attacking Gamboa and the other for hitting a White Sox security guard. Ligue the younger is due in court on Monday.
Initially the Ligues said that the attack was provoked because Gamboa had made obscene gestures at them. Gamboa denied these accusations insisting he had no interaction of any kind with the fans in the stands. Subsequent news reports suggest that the Ligues had planned the assault.
William Ligue was a prime "Manchurian candidate" for this bit of psychodrama designed to silence the fans and their negative commentary on the greed of Major League Baseball. He was a man much down on his luck. According to Ligue's sister, in the past year, her brother has lost a job, lost a daughter and lost a girlfriend. Ligue's personal problems made him a perfect subject and provided perfect motivation. Of course, like all mind-control experiments, the truth will be difficult to discover.
The victim, Tom Gamboa, described as "just another anonymous baseball lifer," has been in professional baseball for thirty years.
He told reporters, "I spent 30 years in baseball as a no-name guy building a reputation on my integrity and honesty. I can look anyone in the eye and honestly say when I've made a mistake. When people have taunted me, I've always been professional in my decorum. They paid for a ticket. I have never responded, not once in my life, with a hand gesture or an oral remark to taunts. Anyone who ever has played for me or played against me can tell you that. It's ludicrous and an insult to my integrity. Those guys picked the wrong guy to lie about."
So now, the talk has shifted from how greedy the people in baseball are to how we have to better protect the good baseball folk from moronic fans. It was a nice play, well executed.
Middleleague Race Down to the Wire
September 15, 2002
With only six games left in the regular cosmic playing season the race for the Middleleague pennant is still too close to call. The Pranktown Busriders are two games in front of the Bhutan Vanguards. The two teams will not face each other during the last week of the regular season. The Busriders player three games away against the Telecity Superbas and finish up with three home games against the Eden Bohemians. The Vanguards play all six of their remaining games on the road: three against the Heartland Capitalists and three against the Delta Dragons. |
The Middleleague champion will meet the Chopintown Preluders, winner of the Underleague pennant, in the Subleague Series. The Vestal Virgins have a lock on the Overleague pennant.
Season 2002 Notes
September 1, 2002
One nice thing about cosmic baseball and its players: there's no fear or threat of a work stoppage. Cosmic players play the game because they love it, not because they get paid to play...With just over three more weeks in the season it looks like the Virgins have a lock on the Overleague pennant. The Middleleague prize is still up for grabs with the Busriders, Vanguards and Woodsox all still in contention. The Underleague pennant will probably go to the rookie Preluders squad...Overleague Rookie of the Season award will likely go to one of three candidates: Jennifer Dodato (IF, Virgins), Silvio Gesell (P, Pisces) or George Harrison (2B, Pisces)...Lawrence Ferlinghetti, veteran outfielder for the Dharma Beats is the front-runner for the Most Cosmic Player award...The Paradise Pisces have never finished in last place, until this season...POST-SEASON begins October 1 with the Subleague Series. The Cosmic Universal Series begins Thanksgiving Day (November 28)...Remember, in memory of the tragic events of last year no cosmic baseball games will be played on September 11.