Foul balls are part of the game. There are signs posted at all major league baseball stadiums to watch out for flying or batted balls.
Sometimes, however, they come too quick to react. And something breaks.
On Tuesday night, Reds.com reporter Mark Sheldon saw it happen right in front of him. Hitter Pablo Sandoval fouled off a baseball toward the press box. The press dove out of the way and the ball hit Sheldon's laptop, shattering it.
“The most unfortunate thing about the whole thing is that I was finished with my first version of the story about the game, which was an 8-3 score in the top of the eighth inning with two outs,” Sheldon said in an MLB.com interview.
The reporter next to Sheldon got the ball, gave it to Sheldon, and then allowed Sheldon to use his laptop to write the story over again.
“Normally, when I see a foul ball coming into the press box, the first few things I do is I put the screen down and I either wheel away or I try to make the catch,” Sheldon said. “In this situation, I wheeled away and forgot to shut the laptop.”
Luckily, this time, no one was hurt.
Earlier this season in Atlanta, Brewers outfielder Carlos Gomez hit a foul ball that hit a young fan and sent him to the hospital.
“Just went to see the young fan that was hit by my foul ball last night,” Gomez wrote on Twitter afterward. “He was in great spirits and I had a chance to sign the ball.”
One of the hardest to believe such incidents happened in 2010, when Minnesota Twins outfielder Denard Span hit his own mom with a foul ball during a game.
It happened during the first inning of a spring training game in Tampa. Span stayed in that game for a few innings, then Yankees legend Derek Jeter told him that it would be a good idea if he left to be with his mother, Wanda Wilson.
"He was just like, 'You go see about your mom,'" Span told MLB.com afterward. "I was already feeling that way, but to have him say it to me, I was like, 'You know what? He's right.'
"Mentally, my mind wasn't into the game. It was on her well-being. That's my mom."
Wilson, a Tampa native, said she was sore but did not go to a hospital afterward.