View single post by KGB
 Posted: Tue Aug 6th, 2019 01:44 pm
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KGB

 

Joined: Wed Jul 4th, 2012
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I was living in Taiwan in the fall of 2003 and around November of that year the country hosted a U17 baseball world series.  The American team was managed by Terry Francona, who, a year later, would guide the Red Sox to their first World Series in 86 years.  During round robin game our boys were scheduled to play the host nation in the city where I was living, so of course I went to the game.  It was in a fairly sizeable stadium, probably 30,000 capacity and it was at least 2/3rds full. 
 
I was sitting behind the third base dugout, about 20 rows up.  I didn't see many other Americans near me, with the exception of the parents section, all of whom were sitting directly behind the dugout.  Every time the Taiwanese pitcher would attempt a pickoff, I'd boo lustily and about 100 Taiwanese fans would turn around to look at me.  An American hit a no doubter at one point and as the ball left the bat I stood up and screamed "Home Run!" in Chinese which also resulted in some baleful looks directed my way.    
 
It was a good game, back and forth with lots of offense, and the crowd was really into it.  Bottom of the 7th inning, with the Taiwanese up, there was a play at the plate and a violent collision which had the American catcher seeing stars.  The run scored and the crowd was going crazy.  So in the top of the 8th, we've got a guy on second and the batter hits one in the gap.  The runner comes home standing up but the Taiwanese catcher is standing ever-so-slightly on the third base line.  So as he's trotting by to score, the American goes shoulder to shoulder, knocking the catcher back on his ass.  From my perspective, this was well within the unwritten rules, due to the collision the previous inning and the fact that the catcher was impeding his route home with no expectation of making a put out.  However, the fans didn't see it that way.  The stadium erupted in jeers and boos.  Suddenly, a Taiwanese man, who had been part of a group of "cheerleaders" going from section to section and leading the crowd in chants, hopped up on the roof of the American dugout, got down on all fours, leans over the front edge, and starts yelling at the team inside the dugout. 
 
Next thing you know, one of the American fathers (I assume he was a father) hopped up behind him.  I'm thinking he's going to yank the guy back off the dugout, which would have been bad enough, but no, he grabs him by the collar and waist and chucked him head first off the dugout onto the field below!  Brother, I'm telling you the entire stadium came unglued!  Debris began raining down on the section where the American parents were sitting.  Suddenly a couple dozen cops were above and below the dugout.  They grabbed the father in question and pulled him down to the home plate area where the backstop protected him from projectiles.  It took about 15 minutes to restore order to the stadium.  The dad was escorted out through the locker rooms by the cops and some trainers/EMTs tended to the dude who took the spill.  I have to admit that I was a bit nervous, considering the fact that I stood out in the crowd as one of "them".  I was with the now-Mrs. KGB and there were, coincidentally (in a city of 3 million), a couple Taiwanese guys I'd played soccer with sitting a few rows below, so I did have some local cover. 
 
The game ended with the Americans winning something like 11-9 and at the final out I beat cheeks out of the area. 

Last edited on Tue Aug 6th, 2019 01:51 pm by KGB



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