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Manning v. Grimsley

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
643 F.2d 20 (1981)


Manning (plaintiff) was injured by a ball thrown by Grimsley (defendant), while Manning was watching a baseball game from a ballpark’s bleachers. Grimsley was a pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles (Orioles) (defendant). The incident occurred as fans sitting in the bleachers were heckling Grimsley continuously while he was throwing warm-up pitches in a bullpen located near the bleachers. Grimsley frequently glared directly at the hecklers. At one point, Grimsley faced the hecklers, wound up and pretended to throw toward an imaginary catcher in the bullpen. When Grimsley released the ball, it flew toward the hecklers in the bleachers and hit Manning. Manning sued Grimsley and the Orioles on counts of battery and negligence. The district judge returned with a directed verdict for the defendants on the battery count, and a jury found for the defendants on the negligence count. Manning appeals the directed verdict on the battery count.

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