Ron Gardenhire: Red Sox fans’ use of cell phone lights ‘dangerous’ (vid)
Wednesday’s game between the Detroit Tigers and Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park was briefly delayed when a sizable contingent of fans simultaneously used their cell phone lights. Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire believes that such antics create a “dangerous” environment for players, particularly for those taking at-bats.
The situation came to a head during the seventh inning with Tigers outfielder Nicholas Castellanos stepped into the batter’s box and initiated a conversation with home plate umpire Mike DiMuro. Gardenhire then came out of the dugout and had a discussion with DiMuro, who afterward walked over to the Red Sox dugout.
A brief delay ensued until Fenway security got control of the situation by asking fans in the center-field bleachers to refrain from lighting up their phones.
After the game, Gardenhire bemoaned the situation and the potential risk it entails for players.
“You ever tried to hit with a light like that in your face? It’s not supposed to happen,” Gardenhire said after Detroit’s 7-1 loss, via the New York Post. “The umpires should have, in my opinion, stopped it right away. They see it happen — it’s right in dead center field.
“The fans are just having fun. I get it. But when it’s in dead center field, my hitters are looking right into it. It’s dangerous. It’s very dangerous, if you’ve ever been trying to hit with a light in your face. So, we just couldn’t let that happen.”
Red Sox manager Alex Cora, meanwhile, had a different take on the scene, calling the fans’ antics “a good weapon.”
Gardenhire obviously has every right to speak out if he believes something puts his players in a tough spot. That said, expect fans in other ballparks to take a page from Red Sox fans’ playbook and do exactly the same thing.