The outcome of this case will ripple throughout youth sports across the U.S......
Two years ago, Steven Domalewski was pitching when the ball slammed into his chest and stopped his heart. He was resuscitated but now has brain damage and is severely disabled.
The family contends metal baseball bats are inherently unsafe for youth games because the ball comes off them much faster than from wooden bats. The lawsuit will also be filed against Little League Baseball and a sporting goods chain that sold the bat.
Here's the thing: Point 1--this aluminum bat issue has been around for years. There's no way the parents can claim they didn't know baseballs hit by aluminum bats go faster and farther than off wooden bats, or that pitchers and third basemen are at the highest risk for injury. Point 2--all sporting goods stores sell chest protectors for little-league pitchers to prevent this exact thing--my son wore one for a season or two. Point 3--all youth sports come with the rare, but inherent risks of catastrophic injury. Point 4--every ball park in America makes parents sign a form stating acknowledgement of the risks of participation. Point 5--if being in possession of all this information, the parents still allowed their son to pitch without protection, do they not bear the responsibility for their son's injury more so than any other party?
Their smarmy lawyer will wait until the jury is seated, dramatically wheel the poor kid into the courtroom, give the grieving mom the cry cue, and then argue that there is a reasonable expectation of safety for a kid playing baseball, but is there? The answer is no, there isn't. All youth sports are dangerous to some degree and we as parents have to weigh the risks against the benefits, the same as we do with all activities. They knew the risks yet took no steps to protect their child. I don't see how the manufacturer can be held financially responsible for their failure to parent.
Somehow I doubt the twelve emotional dummies in the jury box will see it that way. They'll feel sorry for the mom and the kid and award them millions. As a result, aluminum bats will be banned in most ballparks for fear of liability.....all because this family decided to take their shot at hitting the lottery rather than accepting the responsibility for their kid's injury.