Demonstrating good sportsmanship is valued in any competitive game. Kathy McVay may be considered a good sport, but not for playing the game with a positive attitude. On June 18, the Phillies baseball fan fell victim to the Phillie Phanatic’s hot dog cannon; and sustained facial bruising and a hematoma in her eye. Instead of using the incident as an excuse to sue for personal injury, McVay is saving the accident as a funny story she can tell others.
At the point of impact, McVay’s glasses flew off and her face started bleeding. She was ushered to first aid, and then went to the hospital to check for a concussion. While she did not suffer a concussion, she did have visible injuries on her face. Although McVay is making light of the situation, she does urge baseball fans to be aware of their surroundings at all times.
While a representative from the Phillies expressed an apology and concern for the injured McVay, she assures the public that the Phanatic’s hot dog routine will not stop. Various signs are plastered to the walls in the ball park, warning fans to watch in caution for flying bats or balls; however, hot dogs are not included in the list of flying objects. The Phillies representative acknowledges the fact that the Philadelphia Phillies continuously look for ways to make the ball park safe for all fans.
Retiring the hot dog cannon will not be implemented as a safety measure. Generally, fans look forward to the Phanatic riding in the cart, shooting off hot dogs through a cannon into the crowd. It is an exciting event that helps the fans feel involved or connected to the team and mascot. According to an April 2, 2018 USA Today list of the greatest sports team mascots, the Phillie Phanatic ranks number 1. Due to his charm, hilarity, and appearance, it is not difficult to believe this accolade. The McVay vs. Hot Dog incident will likely not shrink the Phanatic’s popularity, but will bring more awareness to the potential risks of attending a baseball game.