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TOTALLY RANDOM

No crying foul at the ballpark

Everyone wants to catch a ball in the stands

October 14, 2009|Mike Penner

What is it about the act of catching a foul ball that causes fans to bring fielders' gloves -- and an insatiable desire to grab a $10 ball -- to major league games?

"Part of it has to do with simply beating the odds," Zack Hample, author of "How to Snag Major League Baseballs," told the Boston Globe.

Hample has a collection of more than 4,000 baseballs, including batting practice balls.

"If they were throwing out 40 candy bars in a crowd of 35,000 people, it'd be fun catching one too," he said.

However, fielding a foul ball has its risks, as Christian Brunelle recently discovered.

Brunelle took a foul ball off his forehead, spilling several beers in the process, before prying the ball from the hand of another fan, Steven Jensco.

"I let him have it because he had a dent in his head," Jensco said. "He's got the scar, he's got the story."

Trivia time

Besides losing the deciding game in their home stadium, what else do division series losers St. Louis, Colorado, Boston and Minnesota have in common?

Show him the money

Several NFL players have said they would not play for the St. Louis Rams if conservative talk-show host Rush Limbaugh bought the team.

Chicago Bears wide receiver Rashied Davis has a different take.

"He's probably not the only one that has questionable beliefs that owns a team," Davis told the Chicago Sun-Times. "Would I go to his team? If they were paying me, yeah. If they're paying me the money, I'm going."

Aristotle takes a Holliday

A sheet of paper with an image of the Larry O'Brien Trophy has been taped to the locker of every Orlando Magic player at Amway Arena.

It includes a quote from Aristotle: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

"You know, that's a great quote," Orlando Sentinel columnist Mike Bianchi writes, "but it's not among my three favorite Aristotle musings: (1) 'All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind.' (2) 'The gods, too, are fond of a joke.' (3) 'Hey, Plato, did you see that incredible gag job by Matt Holliday the other night?' "

Trivia answer

Each team's closer blew a save opportunity in the ninth inning.

(Question and answer provided by reader Dave Fisher of La Canada.)

And finally

NBC's Jimmy Fallon, on President Obama's inviting House members over to play some White House basketball: "He didn't even want to play; he just wanted to see Congress pass something."

--

mike.penner@latimes.com

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