October 16, 2003

The Chicago Sun-Times is defending its decision and taking some criticism for yesterday's story naming Steve Bartman, the Cubs fan who committed a foul error.

posted by rcade to baseball at 10:45 AM - 19 comments

From the first link: Cooke hasn't heard any reader reaction to the story. I imagine it's hard to hear anything with your head up your ass.

posted by Uncle Toby at 10:58 AM on October 16, 2003

I want to subscribe, just so I can cancel in righteous indignation. It's one thing to name the guy, it's another to name his work place, his family, his neighbors, his neighborhood, etc. I'm surprised they didn't end the article with, "Get him, boys!"

posted by dirigibleman at 12:20 PM on October 16, 2003

Well - that's is the story - this guy and his life and connection to the Cubs and baseball. Sorry - but in curse country things aren't viewed as rationally I guess. Having said that though, this does smack of sensationalism and profting off the misery of another - justified through the old school ideal of investigative journalism (it's our job, blah, blah, blah). Media seems to want all the credit and none of the responsibility these days. I suggest that if any harm comes to Mr. Bartmen he consider taking action the American way: Sue the hell out of them.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 12:38 PM on October 16, 2003

A happy ending?

posted by Joey Michaels at 02:27 PM on October 16, 2003

Ugh. A movie about 4 seconds of a baseball game? Betcha Costner's all over that.

posted by therev at 03:01 PM on October 16, 2003

Revolution Studios is a privately-held independent studio . . . Its recent movies have included hits such as "XXX" and "Anger Management," as box office flop and critically scorned Jennifer Lopez/Ben Affleck comedy "Gigli." So the plan is to handle it with dignity and restraint, I'm guessing. I can't think of a better group to handle my story of bad judgment and public humiliation. Actually, I'm sure they'll play it for sympathy, along the "ordinary Joe thrown into unwelcome celebrity" line. Wanna get a pool going on how long it takes for Bartman to show up on Leno?

posted by Uncle Toby at 03:04 PM on October 16, 2003

Wanna get a pool going on how long it takes for Bartman to show up on Leno? Never. It only would have happened if the Cubs had won Game 7 and made everything OK to laugh about. Now, people are just sort of scared for him.

posted by smithers at 03:13 PM on October 16, 2003

Notice that it doesn't mention anywhere that he isn't being consulted, nor does it state in any terms that he's receiving any benefit. It's obvious where the idea for this "film" has come from. He's being stalked, threatened, demeaned, and Hollywood wants to profit off of his predicament. Bastards. Do the right thing, cut this guy a check.

posted by lilnemo at 03:37 PM on October 16, 2003

A "foul error"?

posted by StarFucker at 03:41 PM on October 16, 2003

Hollywood cheats its own and has for years, so to think someone might 'do the right thing' and cut SB a check is beyond absurd.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:55 PM on October 16, 2003

Maybe we should take up some sort of collection for the guy. I'm not sure to what end - perhaps to get the little league team he coaches some new gloves or something?

posted by Joey Michaels at 04:18 PM on October 16, 2003

I heard on Tony Kornheiser today that Kevin James of "King of Queens" fame already has an episode based on this where he costs the Mets (I'm assuming the Mets) a game or something to that effect.

posted by usfbull at 04:32 PM on October 16, 2003

Sorry, Joey's link says it all. I missed that.

posted by usfbull at 04:33 PM on October 16, 2003

I'll contribute to a Bartman collection. Might be easier to just send a check to Steve Bartman care of Hewitt Associates although he might throw it out thinking it's hate mail.

posted by Mike McD at 04:57 PM on October 16, 2003

usfbull even if it is the Mets, I don't think they need anyone's help in losing. bill, I understand the way hollywood works, I've lived in L.A. long enough, I'm just underlining the whole "adding more insult to injury" angle. I understand, I just think it sucks. Forget the fact that its all over the news and will be replayed over and over whenever the Cubs get into the postseason again, now its going to be immortalized on film, then tape, then DVD for him to relive for the rest of his days. Any and all reasonable expectations of living this down are dwindling to say the least.

posted by lilnemo at 05:10 PM on October 16, 2003

meh. can of worms. the lid was coming off whether the sun-times made the last turn of the can opener or not. if they couldn't get their own newsroom to 100% agree on the name vs no-name decision then what hope is there for the media as an entity to have held back on naming the guy? i feel real bad for the guy. he looks like a fan. sounds like a fan. in one sense he was just keeping his eye on the ball and doing only a little more than reaching for something that was coming into his personal space. sorry consequences though.

posted by gspm at 05:16 PM on October 16, 2003

Oh man, Dan Patrick on SportsCenter just got duped by a caller claiming to be Bartman. He answered a bunch of questions, issued an apology and then out of the blue said, "Do you like Howard Stern's butt cheese?" A stunned and disappointed Dan Patrick said "We've been had," and broke for commercial.

posted by usfbull at 05:56 PM on October 16, 2003

An Australian site reported the incident this way today: "The 26-year-old snatched a foul fly ball out of the glove of Cubs fielder Moises Alou during a crucial World Series qualifying game here on Tuesday, a snatch some have attributed to the Florida Marlins triumph over the Cubs in that game." Nice job, Aussies. Just for that, I think we should misreport the facts the next time a dingo eats one of your babies.

posted by rcade at 06:02 PM on October 16, 2003

Voice of dissent here. I don't have a problem with what the Sun-Times did. Bartman became part of the story, whether he wanted to be or not, just like the schmucks in San Fran who sued each other over Bonds' HR record ball. If anything, I thought FOX was the one that was out of line and got the ball rolling in terms of hysteria. Serving the viewers after the gaffe would have entailed a simple explanation about interference, and then moving on as quickly as humanly possible. It becomes one of those quirky moments in baseball history. But just like the Manny home run in the Sox-Athletics series, Thom Brennaman couldn't bring himself to keep the moment in perspective. Instead, he must have gone on about the fan for the next hour -- repeatedly saying, "I hope nothing happens to that fan". For whose benefit, I ask. The people in the stands? They're listening on radio. People watching on TV? If not for our buddies at FOX, we see him on the screen for a split-second, but he's an anonymous oaf and that's it. Of course, I'm sure that key decision-makers at the Sun-Times were going kookoo for cocoa puffs. Why? Because they knew that people were going to be talking about it. Why? Because people got to listen to Father Thom's mountaintop sermon, which pretty much elevated that moment's significance beyond what it shold have been.

posted by jackhererra at 01:18 PM on October 17, 2003

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