Fan ejected from stadium for heckling an umpire

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Fan ejected from stadium for heckling an umpire

Baseball fans are known for their energetic support for their beloved clubs and players, but sometimes their enthusiasm can get out of hand.

On Tuesday, all KBO League games were cancelled due to rain except at Happy Dream Stadium in Incheon where the SK Wyverns hosted the Kia Tigers. While it was the only broadcasted game that day, a female baseball fan was ejected from the stadium after heckling the umpire.

In the top of the 10th inning with both teams tied at 0-0, the Tigers got on the board first after Ko Young-woo, the pinch-runner for Lee Hong-ku who delivered the triple, scored from a sacrifice fly by Paik Yong-hwan.

Originally, Ko was declared out on home plate, but the Tigers appealed right away and the umpires ruled over their original decision after a video review. The decision enraged Wyverns fans, but the game resumed with the Tigers’ next hitter Park Chan-ho at the batter’s box.

While Park was waiting for his second pitch, home plate umpire Kwon Young-chul suddenly stopped the game and went to first umpire Kim Byung-joo, the chief umpire for the game. They then headed to the stands behind the catcher, and ordered a female fan to be ejected. She was later removed by officials at the stadium.

It turned out that the fan, whose name or age is not known, heckled Kwon throughout the game and the cursing got more severe after the decision.

The Wyverns said this is the first time this season a fan has been removed on the umpire’s order.

According to the KBO, baseball fans can be ejected or face legal punishment if their behavior interrupts the game or hurts other fans. The code is written behind the ticket, it said.

Experts said the KBO should come up with strict punishment for unruly fans. On Aug. 22 in Gwangju, Tigers fans near the outfield were caught for cursing at Hanwha Eagles outfielder Lee Yong-kyu and throwing trash at him.

BY JOO KYUNG-DON [joo.kyungdon@joongang.co.kr]

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