Much more serious
, but equally relevant
to the node title
, and personally relevant to me.
Below's part of an AP story from July 2000:
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) - University of Arizona sophomore infielder Kelsey Osburn died Monday, six days after being hit in the head by a batted ball during batting practice.
Osburn, 20, died at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, a hospital spokesman said.
Osburn was playing for the Newark Raptors of the Northeast Collegiate Baseball League. He was running the bases without a helmet during batting practice on June 11 when he was struck in the right temple. He was taken to a local hospital, then airlifted the 35 miles from Newark to Strong Memorial Hospital where he underwent brain surgery. He had been in a coma since the operation.
A very unfortunate incident, but personally traumatic for me. You see, the summer earlier, I was director of public relations for the same Newark Raptors. I often walked on the same field during batting practice to talk to players doing their stretches or ask the coach for a lineup, so I could give it to the press box. Baseballs would often casually fly a few feet from me, some hit rather hard, but this was normal. I always kept an eye on the guy hitting, just to be safe.
But how easy would it have been for me to get caught up in a conversation with a player? To relax and not be on guard? Could this have happened to me in 1999?
This sort of thing happens EXTREMELY rarely in any sports. It's just a freak accident. But still, I was there the year earlier. While I didn't know Kelsey (he wasn't on the team in 1999), I knew many of his teammates.
And how easily could that have been me? Many say that sports lead people to religion. I can believe that now. I was 500 miles away when Kelsey Osburn got hit with a ball. Yet, it will always be the most traumatic baseball experience of my life.