JEFF CAPLAN'S MINUTE OF NEWS

Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Dumb luck at a Mariners game

May 17, 2024, 5:00 AM

The more you sweat, the more luck you have. But sometimes, luck is just being lucky. Proof comes fr...

The more you sweat, the more luck you have. But sometimes, luck is just being lucky. Proof comes from the Seattle Mariners game Monday night. (Canva)

(Canva)

Editor’s note: This is an editorial piece. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

SALT LAKE CITY — There’s no such thing as “luck.”  You’ve heard that luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.  Luck is the dividend that comes from sweat.  The more you sweat, the more luck you have.  Very inspirational.  But sometimes, luck is just being lucky.

Proof comes from the Seattle Mariners game Monday night. 15,000 people in the stands, bottom of the first, and the Mariners Josh Rojas hits a high fly ball to left field.

The guy in the stands who caught the ball is a slightly paunchy 35-ish guy, who holds the ball up for the world to see. For anybody who still has a little kid inside, this is a thrilling moment, catching a foul ball. But remember. This is not a story about baseball. This is a story about luck.

Because on the very next pitch…

The announcers realize the guy who caught the foul ball this time was the very same guy.

The statisticians — and there are far too many of them in baseball — the statisticians say the odds of a single fan catching two straight foul balls on consecutive pitches is 1-in-10 million. And beating odds like those, Mariners fan Josh George instantly became a folk hero Monday night. A radio station gave him tickets to Wednesday’s game. On the field, the batter signed both balls, for Josh, who’s now known as “foul ball guy.” Looking for a little luck, the Mariners even asked him to throw out the first pitch. He’s livin’ the dream. So let me ask. Was this inspiration and perspiration joining together to create opportunity? Or just dumb luck?

On the one hand, Foul Ball guy had to buy a ticket. But so did everybody else. Much as we don’t want to admit it sometimes, luck is being in the right place at the right time.  Or maybe it’s just a lady.

Jeff Caplan is the host of Jeff Caplan’s Afternoon News on KSL NewsRadio. Follow him on Facebook and X. 

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Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: Dumb luck at a Mariners game