Fun Fact - Bird Ball

I love baseball - the game, the strategy, the rules, and the stats. Some events are truly rare, like 4 strike-outs in an inning, or the unassisted triple play. But some things happen only once a century (at least within the major leagues).

On March 24, 2001, while pitching for the Arizona Diamondbacks, Randy Johnson released a fastball, just as a hapless bird flew across the infield. His pitch struck the bird at 90 miles an hour, and the poor creature landed dead in a "sea of feathers." The umpire ruled it a no-pitch. He couldn't call it a strike, or a ball, or an error. I'm not sure if it incremented Johnson's pitch count.

A batted ball has yet to bring down a bird, but I suppose it could happen. Of course there are fewer hits than pitches, so a bird line drive might be even less frequent, perhaps once every 300 years. At that point the umpire would have to make a ruling. Without the interference, would it have been an out or a hit? Maybe he'll call it a fowl ball. (Sorry, I couldn't resist that one.)

Of course I don't want to beam birds with baseballs. I'm sure we would all ike to say, "No animals were harmed in the course of this game."

Further Reading

Youtube video, when bird and ball collide