The Toronto Blue Jays have apologized to Major League Baseball (MLB) and the Baltimore Orioles after a fan threw a beer can at outfielder Hyun Soo Kim during Tuesday’s wild-card game.
Tensions were running high as both Blue Jays and Orioles were battling for a playoff berth when a fan at the Rogers Center in Toronto nearly struck Soo Kim on the head with a beer can (watch video above).
The incident go so out of control that certain analysts questioned if the fan’s reaction was racially-provoked since Soo Kim is of South Korean descent.
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“On the heels of one of the most competitive and exhilarating baseball games in our club’s history, it is extremely unfortunate that the irresponsible actions of one individual would detract from the game on the field and tarnish an otherwise memorable night,” the Blue Jays said in a statement a day after the game.
“We will enact heightened security measures and alcohol policies that will ensure the fan experience and safety of everybody involved,” added the statement.
Meanwhile, Rob Manfred, commissioner of the MLB, condemned the action and said strict action would be taken against notorious fans.
“We’ve also talked to the Blue Jays about the policies with respect to the serving of alcohol. No cans, those sorts of things, to make sure that we have as positive an environment going forward as possible,” said Manfred.
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Toronto Police is reportedly investigating the incident and has promised to punish the perpetrator of the incident. In fact, they’ve warned the fan to turn himself in or face the consequences.
This isn’t an isolated incident.
In 2013, a Toronto Blue Jays fan threw an alcoholic beverage at Baltimore outfielder Nate McLouth at the same venue.
After Tuesday’s incident, the Orioles made it a point to remind the Blue Jays organization of the same.
“Someone threw a beer down at my player. That’s about as pathetic as it gets between the lines. You don’t do that. I don’t care how passionate you think you are.
“Yell, cuss, scream, tell us we’re horrible. We get that. We’re the opposition. We completely understand that. To throw something at a player, that’s as pathetic as it gets,” said an irate Buck Showalter, manager of the Orioles.
The Toronto Blue Jays won the thrilling wild-card game 5-2.