Police release photo of man believed to have thrown beer during Jays game
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Wednesday, October 5, 2016 8:55AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 5, 2016 10:31PM EDT
Toronto police have released a photograph of a baseball fan believed to have thrown a beer at an Orioles player during last night’s American League Wild-Card game at the Rogers Centre.
In the seventh inning of last night’s do-or-die game in Toronto, a person in the stands chucked a beer can down onto the field just as the Orioles player Hyun Soo Kim was about to catch a fly ball.
The ugly moment prompted Orioles manager Buck Showalter to storm the field to address the umpires.
In a tweet sent out Wednesday, Toronto police urged the spectator to turn themselves in, warning that investigators have photos of the incident.
A Toronto Sun article published Wednesday evening identified the man in the photo released by police as Ken Pagan.
According to the article, written by Joe Warmington, Pagan – a Postmedia employee, formerly with Sun Media – had made plans to “turn himself in” to police Wednesday night.
“I can confirm Ken Pagan is an employee of Postmedia,” a statement from Phyllise Gelfan, vice-president of communications with Postmedia, sent to CTV Wednesday night said.
“We are conducting an internal investigation but have reached no conclusions at this time.”
In a statement released Wednesday afternoon, the Jays apologized to the Orioles and called the incident “embarrassing.”
“The Toronto Blue Jays would like to express our extreme disappointment for the incident that occurred during last night’s American League Wild Card game at Rogers Centre involving an object being thrown onto the field of play,” the statement read.
It went on to say that the incident had tarnished “an otherwise memorable night” and that the safety of all those present at the games is “paramount.”
Speaking to NewTalks1010 Wednesday morning, Mayor John Tory said he hopes the "loon ball" who threw the can is punished for the indiscretion.
“I don’t know where they find these people. It’s like the people who drew on the Toronto sign on Nuit Blanche… some loon balls have to ruin it and same with the loon ball that would throw a can of beer out of the stands. But look, it is one in 50,000 and everybody else had a good time and hopefully people know who that was and have singled them out for special attention,” Tory said.
“I hope that the people sitting around that guy… just point him out to somebody and make sure he doesn’t attend any more baseball games."
In a written statement released Wednesday, Major League Baseball and the Blue Jays said the organization and the team are "extremely disappointed" by what happened Tuesday night.
"We appreciate the ongoing investigative efforts of the Toronto Police Service to identify the individual responsible. Any fan who resorts to dangerous actions like last night’s – in Toronto or elsewhere – will be subject to arrest by local authorities. We ask all fans to alert stadium operations employees if they witness any form of unacceptable behavior from fellow spectators. We are committed to providing a safe and fan-friendly atmosphere at all of our games," the statement read.
During a news conference following the game, Showalter called the incident “unfortunate.”
“People have a different way of handling their emotions and I don’t like it. Nobody likes it and I’m sure the Toronto Blue Jays don’t like it. But it’s tough when you have that many people in a ball park and one person does something that reflects poorly on all of them. It can happen in any ballpark,” he said.
“It’s just unfortunate that for a lot of different reasons. People… lose some good decision-making when they get over emotional. Thank goodness the ball players don’t do that as often.”
Orioles centre fielder Adam Jones also had a few words for the perpetrator following the game.
"We get it, we’re the opponents, we understand that. But to throw something at a player, that’s just as pathetic as it gets," Jones told reporters.
"To put us in harm's way when all we're doing is focusing on the game, that's not part of baseball.”
In response to reports of racial slurs being shouted at Jones and Kim during the game, Jones said those type of comments are not new.
“I’ve heard that so much while playing baseball. I don’t even care. Call me what you want,” Jones said.
Const. Drummond told CP24 police are not investigating the comments as no formal complaint has been made.
“Toronto is so diverse and to have comments being made like that is ignorant,” she added.
“It is just uncalled for and it is not tolerated.”
The incident Tuesday night isn’t the first time some unruly Jays fans have behaved badly during a critical post-season game.
During Game 5 of the American League Division Series against Texas last year, fans at the Rogers Centre littered the field with beer cans and debris following a controversial call during the seventh inning. Viewers watched in disgust as television cameras captured a tearful mother protecting her baby as beer rained down on them from the seats above.