By Michael Seinberg
An 11-year-old little league catcher is being sued for $500,000 by a New Jersey woman who was hit by an overthrown ball two years ago while she was a spectator at a game. That is not a misprint. You have not slipped into the Twilight Zone.
It seems that when 11-year old Matthew Migliaccio was warming up a pitcher as per his coaches’ instructions in a bullpen he accidentally overthrew his pitcher and struck Elizabeth Lloyd in the face. “I ran over to see if she was all right,” said Matthew, who is now 13. “She said she was OK. I was just warming the pitcher up, and I was not horsing around,” he added. Keep in mind that Lloyd was sitting at a picnic table 5 feet from the fenced-in bullpen area, which is down the third base line. She claims to have suffered multiple fractures.
In the ensuing two years Lloyd claims she has had to undergo reconstructive surgery and now suffers from headaches, which probably lead to the next part of this ridiculous farce. Lloyd’s husband is suing for the loss of, “services, society and consortium,” of his wife. Guess he got tired of hearing, “Not tonight honey, I have a headache.”
The Lloyd’s attorney; one Riaz A. Mian, will probably be nominated to the Trial Lawyer’s Hall of Fame after his case is read out in court. Mian alleges the throw was intentional and reckless and “assaulted and battered” his client, causing “severe, painful and permanent” injuries. “He throws his best fastball over the bull pen into the picnic area, striking my client in the face,” Mian said. Just for the record, Matthew was the CATCHER, you bonehead.
The suit was just filed, more than 2 years after the May 2010 incident took place. It took two years? Really? Or did it take two years to find a plaintiffs’ lawyer like Mian willing to file this mess in a court of law? And what does the league have to say? Not much and they are offering the family no support. They note that their insurance only covers players and officials, not spectators. In an interesting note, the amount being sought by Mian and his greedy clients is exactly equal to the limit of the Migliaccio’s homeowner’s policy will cover. What a coincidence.
The attorney for Matthew and his family, Anthony Pagano, had some choice words for Mian. “The litigation itself is disgusting. Because the kid was throwing a baseball in a bullpen session, he is forced to retain counsel.”
Hopefully a judge will see some sense and throw this case out and hopefully fine and strike out Mian. In the meantime, in a tip of the cap to childhood resiliency, Matthew continues to play ball on three different teams, no less. “He never stops playing. Baseball is what defines him at this time,” said his father, Bob.