Late last week, the Star Tribune released a peculiar piece portraying 49 year-old Jason Gabbert’s ban from Target Field.
Per the article, Gabbert, who has a passion for obtaining baseballs that are “tossed into the stands by players and ball boys,” received a Twins organization issued trespass notice in August.
Said notice, which prohibits him from attending Target Field for a year, claims he violated the team’s “code of conduct for guests by his overly aggressive behavior in chasing down” baseballs
The Star Tribune story outlined how the ban was ultimately issued after the Plymouth resident was involved in an incident on August 17, 2018:
In addition to that statement from Dave Horsman, an affidavit from one of the above referenced “guests” states that the now banned fan “shoved his way into” their row and tried to “grab the baseball.”
As for Jason Gabbert’s side of the fence, he “insists he never touched the two people and never went into their row.”
Recently, in an effort to get the ban lifted, the baseball collecting enthusiast stood in front of Hennepin County District Judge Bruce A. Peterson.
Unfortunately for him, like Miguel Sano when he sees a slider, Gabbert swung and missed on his attempt.
Intrigued as all hell by this whole situation, I reached out, and was able to arrange a conversation with Jason Gabbert. After talking with him for a couple of hours, here are my hat-trick’s worth of takeaways:
1 – Film Don’t Lie
The discussed trespass notice surrounds a he said vs. they said scenario. Since I’m not a human lie detector, with the information that is currently being presented, it’s impossible to decipher which party is telling the truth.
Gabbert more than agrees with that adage. Without wavering, he insists that releasing the footage from the alleged August incident would prove his side of the statements to be true.
Apparently, the Twins case against him was based on affidavits, rather than any video evidence.
In the event the video confirms the Twins’ side of the argument, Gabbert agrees to adhere to trespass notice.
When I contacted the Twins with a request to see the footage in question, they replied with the following statement:
“Security camera footage is considered internal security documentation, and as such it is not released to the public.”
2 – Clarification of the Hobby
Jason Gabbert is a baseball junkie.
To help clarify his hobby, he’s not attending games with the goal of obtaining meaningless MLB stamped baseballs.
His prizes include items such as strikeouts thrown by elite pitchers and balls that touched the bats of top-notch hitters. It’s not like the man is walking out of the stadium with a bucket full of batting practice baseballs.
3 – Gabbert Comes off as Educated
Despite what is being depicted by others in social media comment sections, in my opinion, Jason Gabbert comes off as one of the brighter bulbs of society’s bunch.
For what it’s worth, while it doesn’t carry anything near the weight of the unseen footage, at no point during our discussion did the extremely legally versed sounding Twins fan say anything that I would deem out of bounds.
I mean, he’s seemingly more adamant than anyone that the footage be released.
To conclude, while the Minnesota Twins organization took the first legal battle, all indications are that this proverbial war is far from over.
Gabbert has the full intention of attempting to ““overturn the trespass notice in federal court.”
In the event that intention comes to fruition, I will most certainly be circling back to this unique story.