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Rangers fans say they never saw toddler, want apology

Apr 27, 2012, 12:31 AM EDT

Kid ball

There was a bit of controversy in the baseball world Wednesday night when a toddler at the Rangers-Yankees game broke into tears when a ball tossed into the stands appeared to be callously stolen by the couple sitting next to him.

But things aren’t always what they seem, and the couple wants everyone to know that they are not the evil monsters everyone thinks they are. Sean Leonard and Shannon Moore, who are getting married this weekend, told WFAA-TV they were attending their first Rangers game together and were so excited and into each other that they didn’t even notice the boy, or that he was crying.

“My fiance Shannon and I were honestly unaware of the situation of the little boy sitting next to us last night since we were so caught up in the excited and moment of being at our first Ranger’s baseball game together,” he wrote in a statement.

Leonard said as a soon-to-be large combined family of seven, that he and Shannon understand the emotions of a young child at a game. They spoke to News 8 Thursday afternoon.

“I love children, I would never hurt someone,” Shannon Moore said.

The boy eventually received a different ball from the Rangers, so all is good in the world.

Leonard, and Moore, however, said that the reaction on the internet has been hurtful, and they would like an apology from Yankees announcer Michael Kay, who insinuated on the air that they were insensitive.

Maybe Kay should throw in some candlesticks, or a place setting, too.

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  1. mjlmdixon - Apr 27, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    If it were me, I could not have said, “The kid has been crying all night and we don’t give in to crying children” So instead, maybe, they say they didn’t notice him. I love kids, but I wouldn’t appreciate paying for tickets and having to work on my patience instead of enjoying the game. Of course, I feel the same about the loudmouths who take no concern for anyone else in their language.

    • sincitybonobo - Apr 27, 2012 at 12:20 PM

      I go to dozens of ballgames per year. Though I am not fond of children, I do recognize the universal sense of entitlement they seem to have toward any foul ball snagged by an adult. So, I always bring a $6 logo ball with me. It’s still in the wrapper and it is from the gift shop of a Pacific Coast League team. I consider it my “give it to a kid” insurance. I’m keeping any gamer- but I will happily part with the logo ball. Anyone- of any age- who criticizes me after I hand a kid I don’t know a $6 souvenir won’t have much of an argument.

      • makjak2 - Apr 27, 2012 at 12:37 PM

        always one step ahead.

      • ltzep75 - Apr 27, 2012 at 1:36 PM

        how does this comment get voted down? In the above scenario, everyone walks away a winner.

    • dsmaxsucks - Apr 27, 2012 at 12:57 PM

      If I were me, and heard someone talking like you, I would roll my eyes and save my language about you for when you were away. The kid was three, and he was crying. And by the way, when you are really a grown up you give the ball to a kid whether he is crying or not. Because you are a grownup.

      And then your lady friend probably thinks more highly of you too. Since they seem to like manners and grace and that sort of thing.

      But that’s just me. Perhaps its my knowledge that baseballs are for sale everywhere, and generosity is hard to find.

      • NJgriffNC - Apr 27, 2012 at 1:13 PM

        “…save my language about you for when you were away.” How cowardly is that?? You are so off base here. That couple paid for their seats. They are more than entitled to keep the ball if they so choose, and they should not feel bad about it.

      • purnellmeagrejr - May 2, 2012 at 8:08 AM

        dumb pr move – the couple should just shut up and go away a nd let everyone forget aboutr them – I already had.

  2. Marty - Apr 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    They snagged the ball fair and square. But still, unless as an adult you’re a drooling idiot, a foul ball is useless. Find a kid to give it to.

    Here’s a tip: When I go to games (without my kids) I always take a look to see if there are kids sitting around me and make a note, so if a ball were to end up in my lap I know who to give it to.

    If the woman you are with has a problem with you giving the ball to someone who’d actually cherish the damn thing, then you better hope that ball gets you ‘around the bases’ with her later, because she’s not a keeper.

    • Marty - Apr 27, 2012 at 11:39 AM

      On second thought, F*** these two.

      The kind of people who’d demand an apology from the announcer are probably the kind of people who’d steal a ball from a kid.

      • illegalblues - Apr 27, 2012 at 2:09 PM

        YES. These two come of as really entitled ponces.

  3. cf17 - Apr 27, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    boo hoo kid…welcome to america

  4. kingjoe1 - Apr 27, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    i dont beleive the couple. They now realize they look small and are trying to do damage control. I dont think they were rubbing it in the kids face you have to be a complete moron not to realize players toss the balls to kids not grown a$$ dopes who get their jollies from a $4 baseball.

  5. savocabol1 - Apr 27, 2012 at 1:25 PM

    Kids always get the freakin ball. It is time adults starting getting in on that action!

  6. slopmcflop - Apr 27, 2012 at 3:45 PM

    Okay, asking for an apology is a little over the top, even though I do think one is warranted. If it were me, I’d just put my head down and wait for it to blow over (wait a couple days with society’s ADD).

    It’s very clear that the kid started to cry from the commotion, not the ball. He’s 3. He won’t remember this. He got a ball anyways. The ball was never in his possesion.

    But if we are to put this couple on blast, why are so many others exempt? I don’t know how many times I’ve seen people, GROWN ADULTS EVEN OMG, catch foul balls and have the AUDACITY to keep it for themselves! How come the media isn’t following every foul ball around and chastising every single adult who keeps one for themselves? What makes this couple so different? Because a kid was crying? What kind of response is that? The parents of the kid themselves didn’t even mind. Just the media and a bunch of internet white knights, who would probably act as the couple did if it happened to them.

    Seriously shocked at how much hate and vitriol is being put on this poor couple, out to enjoy their wedding weekend. Knee jerk reactions and judgments, from people who see a picture of a kid crying and assume the couple must have punched the kid in the face to get the ball.

    Take a second, breathe, think about the facts, hell, think about how YOU would act in that situation, and relax. If you think it’s selfish for an adult to cherish a game ball, than you obviously aren’t much of a sports fan.

    Next time there’s a kid crying in the grocery store because he wants some candy, you all better be ready to whip out your wallet and buy the kid a snickers. Jesus.

  7. Carl Hancock - Apr 27, 2012 at 7:04 PM

    That couple seems completely oblivious to the fact there is a toddler sitting right next to them. How is that even possible? If I’m sitting at a sports event right next to a kid that young, I’m going to notice it. How could you not?

    After watching the actual video clip, the obvious answer is just look at them. It looks like a middle-aged rich dude with his much younger future trophy wife. Completely self-absorbed in their own little bubble and oblivious to everyone around them.

    The commentary is hilarious on the video. Especially when they comment that the guy is rubbing it in the kids face.

    Good luck getting an apology. If you want to blame anyone for looking like pompous self-absorbed snobs… they should blame themselves. The celebrating, posing and photo taking is just silly. It wasn’t even a foul ball that he made an incredible catch of… it was tossed into the stands.

    I was at a Phillies game to see my Cardinals playing back during Pujols rookie season. Pujols hit a line drive foul ball that smacked the lady sitting directly in front of us in the side of the head. As everyone was attending to her, some fat middle aged man chased after the ball that rolled a few seats down and snagged it and kept it for himself. Didn’t even offer it to the lady who left soon after to receive medical attention. Philly fans suck.

  8. corvusrex96 - Apr 29, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    Not buying the ” we didn’t notice them” comment . Look at the video and see the woman’s reaction . She is very of the family and steals a few quick glances over at them.

    That being said I have no problem with them keeping the ball.

  9. rooney24 - May 2, 2012 at 4:44 PM

    Why is it assumed that the kid should always get the ball? If the kid had the ball, or the player had pointed him out and tossed it to him, then the kid should get it. Otherwise, baseball is supposed to appeal to the kid in all of us. I am in my 40′s, go to a few games a year, and have never gotten close enough to even make a grab at a ball. If I get one, why should I have to give it up to some kid that will have another 40 years to get one?

    On a slightly different note, is it really safe for a kid that small to be sitting in seats that close to the field? If a hard foul ball comes flying in, his parents have zero chance of protecting him, and you can’t tell me a kid that small will ever remember that game or get anything out of it. Leave the kids home until they are at least in the 8-10 range and might be able to dodge a ball.

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