‘Douche du Jour’: S.F. Giants Fan on Life Support After Brutal Beating Outside Dodger Stadium
It was supposed to be a joyous occasion– a baseball fan traveled from the San Francisco Bay Area to Los Angeles to watch his World Champion San Francisco Giants take on the hated Los Angeles Dodgers on the opening day of the 2011 Major League Baseball season. But 41-year-old Bryan Stow is lucky to be alive after being beaten to within inches of his life by douchebag Dodger fans in a parking lot outside the ballpark Thursday night.
According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Stow, a father of two from Santa Cruz who works as a paramedic, was leaving the game with two friends following the Giants’ 2-1 opening night loss to the Dodgers when he was blindsided by multiple assailants. Stow, who had been proudly sporting the Giants’ orange and black, was knocked to the ground, slamming his head on the pavement. Despite being knocked unconscious, the Dodger fans continued to kick Stow while he was down. His friends were also beaten when they attempted to intervene.
Stow is now on life support, in critical condition and fighting for his life.
“He is stable at this point, but it could take a turn for the worse,” Los Angeles police detective P.J. Morris told the Chronicle. Morris appealed to the public for help in finding the perpetrators of this brutal beatdown. “There were thousands of people in the lot,” he said. “It was a totally horrific sight– it probably lasted about 15 seconds.” He described the attackers as Latino men in their late teens or early 20s. One was wearing a tank top, the other a Dodgers jersey.
The bad blood between Dodger and Giant fans dates back to the late 1800s when both teams were playing in New York. It’s the oldest rivalry in American professional sports, and it continued unabated when both teams moved to California in 1958. There have been some memorable moments in the bitter rivalry, like when Giants pitching legend Juan Marichal whacked Dodgers catcher Johnny Roseboro over the head with his bat in 1965. The two men eventually became life-long friends, with Marichal delivering the eulogy at Roseboro’s 2002 funeral.
Dodger fans have particular reason to be sore at Giants fans this season. While the Dodgers endured a bitterly disappointing 2010 season, suffering through a nasty ownership divorce and a losing season on the field, the Giants won the World Series, baseball’s biggest prize, in smashing fashion. The last time the Dodgers won it all was in 1988, when many of their current players were just learning to walk. Still, there is never an excuse for the type of violence witnessed outside Dodger Stadium this opening night.
“It’s sad. It really is,” lamented Giants manager Bruce Bochy. “It’s one thing for two clubs to go at it and compete. This goes too far. It’s a shame someone is in critical condition because of a ballgame. Come on. Let’s not get too serious about this. When it gets violent, it’s gotten out of hand. It sounds like the guy got blindsided, which makes it even worse,” he told the San Francisco Chronicle.
The Dodgers issued a statement calling the crime “extremely unfortunate.” “We’re committed to having the most fan-and family-friendly environment in baseball and will continue to make that a top priority.”
They’ve got their work cut out for them.
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