MLB Asks Lawmakers to be Cautious in Recently Legalized Sports Betting World

On July 31, 2018, at the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) Bryan Seeley, a senior vice president with Major League Baseball, asked lawmakers to be cautious in the recently legalized sports betting world. As we have previously reported, in May 2018, the United States Supreme Court struck down a federal statute controlling the states’ ability to regulate sports gambling. In its majority opinion, the court voted to strike down the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992 (PASPA). Although PAPSA did not…
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Update: Former Yankees Player’s Negligence Suit to Stay in State Court

As we have previously covered, former New York Yankees outfielder, Dustin Fowler, sued the Chicago White Sox in February 2018 after his first ever major league game ended in injury on the White Sox field.  While chasing a foul ball, Fowler ran full speed into what would normally be a padded wall, but what was actually an unpadded metal electrical box that was unapparent to him prior to impact.  Fowler sued the White Sox, claiming that the team negligently installed the box such…
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Former Florida Circuit Judge Faces Disciplinary Action Over Tampa Bay Tickets

On June 22, 2018, a referee’s report was returned regarding former Florida circuit court judge John Lakin and his use of baseball tickets that had been gifted to him by counsel while their motion was pending in his court. While presiding over a personal injury case in 2015, Lakin returned a defense verdict.  The next day, Lakin was offered Tampa Bay Rays tickets from plaintiff’s counsel, whose firm was known to regularly give such tickets out within the legal community.  Lakin accepted.  About a week…
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Hot Dogs Bite Back

Philadelphia Phillies Mascot the “Phanatic” has been launching free hot dogs high into the stands for as long as Phillies fans can remember. The dogs are launched using a custom turret style launcher mounted on the back of a John Deer, which makes for quite the spectacle. The Phanatic has fed the fans for years with no issues or hot dog related injuries. This all changed this past Monday, June 18th. Longtime Philadelphia resident and Phillies fan Kathy McVay was seated behind…
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SCOTUS Declines Opportunity to Reconsider MLB Antitrust Exemption

Major League Baseball’s immunity from antitrust violations under the Sherman Act has been called an “anomaly.” It has also been consistently upheld by courts since 1922, when it was unanimously affirmed by the Supreme Court of the United States. The exemption was codified by Congress in the Curt Flood Act of 1998, maintaining an exemption for MLB and its clubs when conducting the “business of baseball” and providing more freedom to players seeking free agency and salary arbitration. Despite striking out with lower courts, two…
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Marlins Move Former Employee’s Wage Suit to Federal Court

In April 2018, a former marketing manager for the Miami Marlins filed a lawsuit against the team, claiming lost wages and violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act. On Friday, June 1, 2018, the Marlins filed a notice of removal, moving the case to federal court pursuant to the club’s contention that the former employee’s complaint raises substantial questions of federal law. Boris Garcia Menier started as an intern with the Marlins in 2006 and later became a marketing coordinator, supervisor and then manager…
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Chicago Cubs Have to Produce Original Emails in Former Scout’s Lawsuits

On October 18, 2017, a former professional baseball scout with the Chicago Cubs Baseball Club, Dennis Henderson, sued the Cubs for violating the California Labor Code, California Family Rights Act, and for discriminating against him on the basis of his age and disability. Henderson is over 40-years-old and had hip surgery while employed with the Cubs. While Henderson worked for the Cubs, he was responsible for scouting three professional baseball organizations; however, according to the Cubs summary judgment motion, scouts who were performing well…
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Misrepresentation of Baseball Bat Weight Sparks Class Action Suit

Easton Baseball / Softball, Inc. is a top manufacturer of baseball and softball products, has been subjected to a class action suit filed in United States District Court for the Central District of California. After discovering that the baseball bat he purchased for his son was heavier than advertised, plaintiff Ricky Wisdom is seeking to stop the sale of incorrectly weighted bats and recover damages for consumers paying a premium for Easton’s products. Easton has acquired a strong reputation in the sporting goods industry for…
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MLB Players Move to Compel Discovery Yet Again in Al Jazeera Libel Suit

 On April 20, 2018, MLB players Ryan Zimmerman and Ryan Howard, plaintiffs in the Al Jazeera libel case, filed another motion to compel discovery in the ongoing battle. As we have previously reported, this is not the players’ first attempt at extracting additional information from defendant Al Jazeera amid discovery. The defamation suit stems from their production and airing of a 2015 documentary, called “The Dark Side,” which accused the MLB players of using performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs) while playing for the MLB. The entire…
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White Sox’s Move to Dismiss Dustin Fowler’s Negligence Suit

On February 13, 2018, the Chicago White Sox moved to dismiss a suit brought by brought by former New York Yankees outfielder, Dustin Fowler. Fowler, now a member of the Oakland Athletics, sued the White Sox claiming that the team negligently caused him to injure himself during a game at Guaranteed Rate Field, home of the White Sox. The incident occurred on June 29, 2017, when Fowler was running at full speed, chasing a foul ball, and crashed into the low corner wall. His right…
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