MLB News: Sleeping Fan Seeks $10 Million
By now you have probably seen the video of a New York Yankees fan sleeping during a nationally televised game in April against the Red Sox. During the ESPN telecast, broadcasters John Kruk and Dan Shulman pointed out the fan and questioned why one would come to a ball game only to sleep. But the fan, Andrew Robert Rector, is now suing both ESPN and MLB for $10 Million in a defamation case.
In the lawsuit Rector alleges that the announcers used an “avalanche of disparaging words” towards him. He also described the incident as an “unending verbal crusade” that continued the next day on MLB’s website through viewers’ comments.
Earlier today ESPN released the following statement in regards to the lawsuit:
“The comments attributed to ESPN and our announcers were clearly not said in our telecast. The claims presented here are wholly without merit.”
It’s likely that Rector’s lawsuit will be tossed out as it was not the actual announcers who made the comments about him, but rather online commenters. However, his lawsuit could bring stricter regulations for websites that allow comments. In the future websites could be required to have a moderator approve all comments before they can be posted.
While it is unfortunate that Rector was the butt of other people’s jokes, I just don’t see how any judge could side with him and award $10 million in damages.
Here is a copy of the entire lawsuit filed by the Yankees fan from: The Smoking Gun