by Ellie Coatar
The Missouri Supreme Court heard oral arguments Sept. 11 on a case about hot dogs.
John Coomer is suing the Kansas City Royals Corporation over an eye injury he received after being struck in the face by a hot dog at a game in 2009.
Coomer’s attorney, Robert W. Tormohlen, argued that the hot dog toss is not an inherent risk at a baseball game and that Slugger, the teams mascot, was negligent.
“Most courts all across the country limit the risks to those inherent of a baseball game. Nobody has gone to the mascot,” Tormohlen said.
Tormohlen contends the Royals failed to prove to the jury that Coomer was at fault because he did not act unreasonably after being hit by the hot dog.
“There is a difference between this and a t-shirt. These hot dogs were wrapped in foil. They were four and a half ounces, and they were essentially projectiles,” Tormohlen said.
Kansas City Royals Baseball Corporation attorney Scott D. Hofer said the trial court correctly responded to Coomer’s claims. He said Coomer acknowledged that he saw the motion of the throw, people cheering in his section and looked away.
“In this day and age, the 21st century, there’s no way you don’t know that these types of activities were taking place,” Hofer said.