Implications of the Death of Phillies Fan, David Sale – Phillies Nation
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Implications of the Death of Phillies Fan, David Sale

Recent history has made it a joyous time to be a Phillies fan.  Beyond the 2008 trophy, this year’s team has rallied from an average start, catapulting themselves back into the elite class.  This weekend, the Phils took two of three from a very respectable St. Louis Cardinals team.  But after the Phils won Saturday’s game, a young life was taken.  The beauty mark of a World Championship quickly turned to the black eye of a senseless death.

We’ve seen insolent and vulgar behavior before at sporting events in Philadelphia – probably experienced it first-hand.  Yet the unfortunate actions of few have become synonymous with many.

After David Sale Jr., 22, of Lansdale was beaten to death outside of Citizens Bank Park on Saturday, the parallels were made immediately.  This city is filled with rude, despicable creatures and we were all lumped into the boat.  Plus this is not something the national media forgets; nor should they.  Colin Cowherd spat his fury and vitriol, blaming it on lack of education.  Just blame it on ignorance.

Although the whole story has not been revealed, Sale was jumped and beaten to death after an altercation over a spilled beer inside McFadden’s, which carried over to the parking lots outside of the stadium.

It’s foolish to think these kinds of things won’t happen.  Alcohol fuels the inner testosterone and, with the backdrop of an intense sporting event that credits winners, not losers, turns men into meatheads.    Three men, if we can call them that, believed that by beating a man repeatedly, they would win.  Now everyone has lost.

As part of Phillies Nation, I’ve experienced the passion of Phillies fans in many new ways.  I feel I am now one with the team, the city, and the fans, more than ever. The stain of a murder on the grounds of our park affects us all to an extent.  We should not downplay the loss the family of David Sale now must endure.  Here at Phillies Nation, our condolences go out to his family.

As a fan base, we have found solace and reprieve from everyday life in what trades will be made, which prospects are being watched, and whether or not J.P. Ricciardi is losing his mind.  Someone who enjoyed the same pastimes – one of our own – is now gone.  It hurts me deep because I think of the ballpark as a cathedral, a place where we can go to worship the baseball gods and pray for a run, or a win, or a championship.

Many of us did not know David Sale, but I believe there is an easy way to remember his life: by being a proper fan.  By proving the pundits wrong that pounce on Philadelphia’s every error. Whether we like it or not, it is you and I, and millions of other Phillies fans that will gain the reputation of three immature, cowardly cretins.  I think we all should rally around the spirit of Brotherly Love, giving our Phillies the fan base they deserve. It something we need to do.

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  1. Brian

    July 28, 2009 at 8:35 am

    Pat, thanks for writing about this, but I don’t think we should be making any excuses for possible reasons why these absolute punks did this, whether it be sports, alcohol, testosterone, or anyhting else. Thousands of us can all go to the games and enjoy all three without any problems. What they did is horrible and any rational and sane person cannot attempt to understand how or why they, or any murderer, could commit such acts. And, let’s lay the facts out there: it was over a SPILLED BEER. This is an absolute disgrace, and the fact that they kept kicking the guy when he was down shows the real depth of their issues.

  2. Whole in the wall gang

    July 28, 2009 at 8:50 am

    “Brotherly Love” are you kidding me….have ya been to Philly lately…the only thing those “people” is the Phillies and the Eagles….life there is a cesspool you’d have to get you’re GPS out and put it in overdrive to find Brotherly Love…not surprised it was over spilled beer….its like water to those “fans” look what happens on dollar dog night a great idea? …really try going there for the next one see how ya make out …watch and listen if you’re a father its gonna one time deal….our company had a box of seats there at CBP….not anymore! dog night did it for them….broken windshield and a keyed up car did it for the VP’s daughter a total of 7 cars were vandalized that night hers was one of them………nice!
    Brotherly Love my ass!

  3. Geoff

    July 28, 2009 at 9:13 am

    I have noticed that it has become too much of a frat party type atmosphere, especially tailgating. I mean its ok to go to McFaddens and ahve a few beers or most people are fine tailgating. But a baseball game is a FAMILY environment, not a venue for people who are 30 but still think that they are in a fraternity and can behave as such. This tragic event is a culmination of that trend. Only weak and cowardly people gang up on one person and attack them – REGARDLESS of a reason. We have had had times where you or one of your friends gets in an argument at a bar with ONE person in another group of meatheads. For whatever reason ALL of them feel the need to proceed to try and start a fight or wait for you outside.

    That is what weak people do. I was at the game that day and was very disturbed to hear of that incident when I got home. Its a sad day indeed for the fans of this city’s sports teams and it will feel very different when I walk into that place next time. It will certaintly feel stained or tainted in some way.

  4. Bob

    July 28, 2009 at 9:32 am

    The actions of a few cowards taints the great fans and more importantly good, law-aibing citizens that fill that park every night. I tailgate with friends and we know how to have a good time, within reason.

    There is nothing else to say other than this is a tragic loss. My heart goes out to the Sales family.

    Those responsable will rot in jail and get what they deserve.

  5. kelly

    July 28, 2009 at 9:47 am

    Nicely said. It is a sad loss for everyone, and it’s a shame that these 3 people are now representative of Phillies fans in the national media. Like you said…the best we can do is be a proper fan, like the 45,000 other people at the game likely were.

  6. The Original Chuck P

    July 28, 2009 at 10:07 am

    It goes without saying that this is a trajedy… my heart goes out to the friends and family of David Sale. I don’t want to downplay anything… any time someone is killed because of ignorance and stupidity, those people involved should be severely punished.

    It should be noted that although this occurred in the parking lot, it really transpired at McFaddens… bar fights happen and unfortunately they often end badly. Not downplaying anything… these guys deserve to rot and people need to be more mature REGARDLESS of venue. Chances are, at least one of the parties involved did not even attend the game.

    I think that the ballpark does a good job of limiting drunkenness ($7 beers are going to make you think twice about going over the edge. Plus, there’s no beer after the 7th and usually the ballpark staff is right on top of any arguments)… I’m not saying that things never get out of hand but I think that by saying that this was at the Phillies game, you’re making it a national event. It wasn’t at the game… fans shouldn’t be afraid to come to the game with their kids. The police said that McFadden’s is not considered a nuisance bar but it is a bar and people do stupid things when they drink. This is a trajedy but so is every other death that happens because of drunkenness.

  7. Manny

    July 28, 2009 at 10:17 am

    I’ve been reading about this and I can’t help getting extremely angry, upset, and frustrated. How these bast*rds snatch a young kid’s life over spilled beer. The three “men” charged all have previous criminal history and they’re 35, 45, and 28. Beating up a 22 year old. “One of the three suspects got Sale in a headlock and the others beat and stomped him until he was motionless.” Those 3 guys aren’t Phillies fans… they are criminals that need to be locked up for good.

    I’m completely disgusted by this incident… My thoughts and condolences go out to the victim’s family and friends.

  8. Manny

    July 28, 2009 at 10:23 am

    Pat: Thanks for the article, but I think you omit the fact that all the guys charged have a criminal record (arrests, stabbing, you name it). It’s not just alcohol. People don’t just kill because they get really drunk. They HAVE to have some disposition to kill, and no respect for life.

  9. Geoff

    July 28, 2009 at 10:32 am

    Since when is it cool and tough to do stuff like this? That what I don’t get about our society. All these people act tough and macho, meanwhile when you see real trouble in the world they ignore it or run away and instead go and pick on some kid who spilled a beer on them. Thats just a prime example of the sickness that we have as a people. The criminals did the action, and they should bear the responsibility but it is indicative of the decay of our society as a whole.

  10. A fan

    July 28, 2009 at 10:44 am

    Time for everyone to take a break from the booze. Past records or not, seems to me the mixture of booze and decisions these days in getting way out of line in general for all. My condolences to the Sale family. May the good Lord bless us all.

  11. Chuck

    July 28, 2009 at 10:49 am

    I can’t really add anything that hasn’t already been said by my fellow “Nation” friends…..thanks for all your comments. Senseless, senseless behavior. It actually embarrasses me to say that I’m from Philly when sh!t like this happens.

  12. psujoe

    July 28, 2009 at 11:13 am

    Senseless is right, but it’s not just alcohol that does this. My brother and I were attacked by a group of people in Fox Chase because I had a Cheltenham jacket on. They broke a hockey stick over his back and messed up his Kidney. We’re just lucky other people stepped in or who knows what would’ve happened.

    Did they go to jail, no. Crime is easy to prevent because 85+% is done by repeat offenders but society refuses to keep these people in jail. Heck, the guy that just gave the gun to the woman that Killed McNair was a convicted murderer. How the %$#@ does a convicted murderer get out of jail.

    I’ll finish with these 3 murderers should get the chair and be done with them.

  13. George

    July 28, 2009 at 11:14 am

    I totally agree with Geoff, who says our society is decaying. I’m not from Philadelphia, but even here, in what’s supposed to be a quiet southern town, we get the same thing. People get in your face about things they themselves are at fault for, and take it out in some macho manner. But just look at our examples: Rambo types in the movies, macho and intimidating automobile ads (our car will flatten the competition!) militant church goers, cheating CEOs and politicians; the list goes on. No more do Americans respect anything, let alone each other. Sporting events have become places not of legitimate and fine competition, but places of poor losers, and worse, poor winners. No one is satisfied with defeating their opponent. The opponent has to be intimidated. The loser must lick the winners boots, or kiss his ***, or be beaten down or beaten to death.

    The press should realize, and the American public should realize that this murder was not an isolated event. Don’t blame it on Phillies fans; the same thing could happen, and does happen in other places. Personally, I’d like to see these thugs get the chair, and I don’t really believe that much in capital punishment. In this case, though, it seems appropriate. Macho thugs can’t be tolerated anymore.

  14. Georgie

    July 28, 2009 at 11:25 am

    A young life taken over a spilled beer, by a bunch of drunken low lifes with prior records for this kind of behavior, it’s apalling and disgusting. Why are people allowed to get that drunk at a family venue? I’m not sure I’ll make the trip down there for a game now, this turns me off completely, and scares the livin’ crap out of me as well. I’ve been advocating no alcohol at sporting events for a while now, but heaven forbid people would have to go to a baseball game and remain sober, how can you have any fun if you’re not obnoxiously drunk?

    All of these jerks have done similar things before with a slap on the wrist, I see they are being charged with murder, so hopefully there will be no plea bargaining and they will become the unwilling girlfriends of their cellmates.

    I am sorry for the friends and family of the victim, there are no words befitting this tragedy for them. To end a young man’s life this way is inexcusable, and from the reports that I’ve read, something needs to be done about McFadden’s, you can’t just throw people like that out into a public parking lot where they continue their violent behavior.

  15. jake

    July 28, 2009 at 11:28 am

    is McFaddens or the security (or lack thereof) at citizens bank park responsible in anyway

  16. Georgie

    July 28, 2009 at 11:37 am

    jake, from what I’ve read so far, McFadden’s is not commenting since there is an ongoing investigation. Reports say this bus group of 30 or 40 from Fishtown and the bachelor party of 8 were all drinking in the bar, when the fights started security threw them all out, and smaller fights ensued in the parking lot. Apparently noone from McFaddens called the cops, 911 was called from the parking lot as the creeps were beating the Sales kid to death.

  17. Chrissy

    July 28, 2009 at 11:37 am

    Beautifully written, Pat.

    These three murderers are the scum of the earth. That anyone can even justify taking someone’s life over a spilled beer makes me absolutely sick. To even fight or argue over something like a spilled beer is senseless. It seems to me like these three lowlifes were bound to find trouble whether it was at the ballpark or not.

    My heart goes out to the Sale family. From what I understand he was there for a bachelor party and the bachelor was his sister’s soon-to-be-husband. How sad that the celebration of such a happy occasion turned so tragic.

    This tragedy has proved that the sort of crap that we tried to leave behind in the Vet has reemerged at CBP. Now is the time to do whatever it takes to squash this sort of behavior before it keeps good fans out of the stands. The ballpark should be a place for families and decent fans to cheer on a great baseball team. I don’t want these kinds of scumbags in my ballpark.

  18. phil

    July 28, 2009 at 11:37 am

    this is quite simply nothing more than a bar fight gone wrong. unfortunately that bar happens to be connected to CBP. This has nothing to do with being a phillies fan. things like this happeneverywhre

  19. Don M

    July 28, 2009 at 11:41 am

    psujoe… I just moved there last year how long ago did that happen? Was is the same night as Eddie Pollock?


    I can’t believe that there were not enough Police Officers out there when these guys all spilled out from McFaddens.. ?

    They need to start cracking down on the tailgaiting.. everytime I’ve been down there so far this year.. I think 8-9 games .. the parking lot is full of people, already drunk (no matter how early it is) many of them with no tickets for the game, and no intention of getting tickets..

    McFaddens, on game days, should be limited to only those who have tickets to the game, but I don’t think that will solve anything. Maybe once that Philly-Live opens where the Spectrum is, they will not allow tailgating.. and that should help the problems down there to some degree

  20. kelly

    July 28, 2009 at 11:44 am

    jake- I was in McFadden’s when the fight started and the bar security there took care of it very quickly…there were probably about 7-8 security guys on it within a few seconds. They were licked out, but outside they kept on fighting. I am suprised they made it from McFadden’s to Jetro lot without some type of parking lot security or police not seeing or stopping it. I read online today that there was a bill submitted last year in City Council that would require businesses to call 911 after breaking up a fight or ejecting a patron. Not sure if that passed or if they did or didn’t call the police.

  21. Phillies Fan in NYC

    July 28, 2009 at 11:47 am

    I was also at the game that day, traveled down from NYC for it… and for an out of towner like me, it’s usually just fun to be with like minded fans, being able to cheer with my people. I got there late, so i had to park in the eagles lot… after the game, there were MANY tough guy punks wandering around, drunk, puffed up. I won’t say they were looking for a fight, but they didn’t seem to mind if they found one. I was waiting outside the car with my wife to let the traffic clear out… but after a bit, it just didn’t feel friendly so i decided to get going. Hey, maybe it was that day… it was hot, steamy… people were drunk, i don’t know. I definitely don’t pin it on philly fans, i’ve gone to many games and have never seen anything like what happened… and ive seen plenty of shit go down on subways after met/yankee games. What gets me though… no one could stop it? 3 guys beating the shit out of someone on the ground, no one could step in?

  22. Greg B

    July 28, 2009 at 11:49 am

    Thanks for posting this on here, I was wondering if it was going to get any attention. This is one of the worst things I’ve ever heard.

    It is stupid to blame a city for a tragedy like this, all this “Oh, that’s just Philly” reaction to this is absolutely unfair. However, I do agree it reflects poorly on us and I commend the call to “be a proper fan”.

    There is a line between fun, good times, getting a little crazy, and being absolutely boorish.
    I think the responsibility lies with all of us to help the image. Point that guy with the laser beam out to the ushers, rein your buddy in who has had too many drinks and is dropping F bombs around 6 year old kids and tell him to watch his f%^$ing language, and for Chrissakes realize that just because someone is wearing a different jersey than you doesn’t make him/her sub-human. Yes, ribbing is in order but personal attacks and ruining his/her experience at the Park? That’s ignorant.

    So let people know when they are out of line. I live in DC and have admonished a few Phils fans getting out of hand in DC, its surprising how they listen to a fellow fan wearing Phils garb.

  23. psujoe

    July 28, 2009 at 11:55 am

    The incident with my brother and I happened in 1982 so it was a long time ago. The Eddie Pollock incident happend well after that. I used to go up to Burholm park and drive golf balls all the time.

    The thing that really pisses me off is one of these thugs was arrested for almost beating someone to death before. I believe he just got anger managment. We need to put the thugs in jail and let them rot there!

  24. Miles

    July 28, 2009 at 11:57 am

    I understand everyone’s frustration with the fact that the abuse of alcohol was a factor in this, especially since it was at/connected to CBP. But I’m a college student and get drunk all the time. That includes the majority of time that I’m at the ballpark. But as soon as my friends and I go into that stadium, the only side effects are a few extra hot dogs and a probably a little bit more chest bumping after home runs. We don’t curse, we don’t fight, etc.

    The reason I say this is that it’s too easy to label certain activities or groups of people. The fact of the matter is that the murderers involved here were just simply criminals through and through, as others have mentioned. Obviously alcohol was involved since the argument began at a bar, and obviously it labels Phillies fans because it happened at the park, but in reality this beating could have taken place without alcohol and away from the stadium.

    After saying all of that, I wouldn’t be upset if the Phillies banned tailgating at the park or something of that nature. I know they would never do that, but after this tragedy I would be willing to take one for the team.

  25. Geoff

    July 28, 2009 at 11:58 am

    I TOTALLY agree that McFaddens on gameday, or at least DURING the game should be closed to ticketholders only. Also, my roommate is a little bit of a jock type – although is actually responsible unlike many of them – BUT still and when he goes with me to the Phillies games he HAS to get there MAD early and tailgate in the parking lot and get really drunk like its a frat party….WHY? It is a BASEBALL game. I dont even like being drunk for football or hockey games let alone baseball.

    I usually take the train in from Manayunk and get to teh park about 30-45 mins early. Then I will usually head into McFaddens and have a few beers until gametime. THats fine with me, because I really dont want to be HAMMERED at a freaking baseball game getting there and drinking for 3 or 4 hours in the summer heat which DEHYDRATES YOU because alchohol in that weather has a dehydrating effect.

    They definitely need to ban tailgating at these Phillies games, and not just because of this unfortunate event. It really has no place in a baseball environment. Its ok to be a little buzzed but come on man.

    Also, given that the team is more popular now I think a lot of new fans are coming to the game that used to NEVER come. Those are the meatheads that only like football but now need to latch onto a positive thing like the Phillies because the Eagles have been failing and failing and failing. Regardless of who it is, the team needs to tighten up a few things to solve these issues. That does NOT mean that the place should be like going to the airport, as I normally dont even like bans of anything. But something needs to be done to curb the frat party atmosphere there.

    Look. I was in a fraternity in college, but that was in college, and no it is NOT for life – just a few good and close friends still remain anyway from that experience – who knows what happened to the rest of them. Im 26, and even I really dont identify with that type of mentality anymore. So why are people in their 30’s still caught up in that failing mentality? It boggles my mind.

  26. The Original Chuck P

    July 28, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    Kelly- that would be a bill that I would endorse…. bar security are there for one reason; to make sure that things don’t happen inside the confines of their bar… bouncers. They don’t want to have to detain everyone that gets loud because that would be bad for business and it puts them in a precarious position. But kicking people out doesn’t solve the problem… it doesn’t stop the fight from happening. It actually turns it into a more dangerous situaiton… police should always be alerted.

    Again, this was not a Phillies incident… it was a bar incident. I’ve tailgated numerous times this year and there has NEVER been a serious fight. Maybe some heckling but that has to be expected to some degree, right? The ballpark party atmosphere is what has allowed this team to do the things they are doing… people enjoy heading down to the ballpark to play parking lot drinking games, grill some grub and root for their team… there is nothing wrong with that and the repulsive actions of three repeat offenders should not be the stepping stone for drastic changes at the ballpark. Legislative action? Certainly, but it shouldn’t affect the way that I respectfully enjoy the games.

  27. kelly

    July 28, 2009 at 12:04 pm

    Maybe it would make sense to only open parking lots 2 hours or so before the game, or whenever the ballpark opens. Though, people could probably just drink elsewhere, or they could drink lots of alcohol within 2 hours and be pretty intoxicated.

  28. V

    July 28, 2009 at 12:08 pm

    I’ve gone to games all over the place and have seen fights everywhere. The national media loves to call Philly fans crazy and dangerous, but the same thing can happen anywhere. Go to the bleachers at a red sox game and count the number of fights…Stupid people will get into fights at games, bars, the beach or anywhere.
    I’ve been involved in enough to know that if you really want to avoid a fight, you probably can. So knock it off and don’t push the situation further than it needs. I get it…you’re a big tough guy picking on some drunk kid. Get over yourself. Maybe try to get laid once in a while. Then you won’t be so worried about acting tough.
    I really have no problem with giving opposing fans crap…or even swearing. This isn’t church. But why get violent? Grow up

  29. Morris Buttermaker

    July 28, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    I grew up in Fishtown, and know Moe’s Tavern pretty well. It is an insult to other nuisance bars to consider that place a nuisance bar. It is a really bad place. We used to joke that it was the type place you could get into a bar fight just by walking by. After reading the article about one of the suspects today, it apparently really was. And found out last night that one of the guys arrested was the same guy who stabbed a distant cousin of mine in 1993. The Police should have been aware of a group of 30 people from that bar going anywhere.

    The whole getting incredibly drunk and fighting is an American thing, but it does exist in other countries. I was in Japan once, at a bar, and saw a drunk guy fall into a table, and wipe out at least 20 drinks. He got up, apologized and everybody laughed it off. But it seems like here, so many people want to get drunk and start fights. Call me strange- I like to get drunk and actually have fun. Whatever happened to puking in a lampshade?

    Part of me thinks that 7 dollar beers are a part of the problem. That leads to people drinking as much as possible before the game. How many people on this board have drunk 3 beers in 30 minutes before heading into a game? I’ll admit that I have done it more than a few times. I also think the drinking age of 21 is part of the reason people do not learn to drink responsibly. I like the middle European method of beer and wine at age 16, and strong alcohol at 18. It teaches responsibility. If 18-21 year olds could legally buy alcohol, it might cut down on the number of binge drinking deaths because they would not feel the need to drink as much as possible.

    But it is a really sad storiy, and really makes you think about life and how quickly it can be taken away. I always tell people, “You have to sleep late when you can.” It’s my way of saying that you need to do things while you can, just things like letting people know you love them.

  30. Andrew

    July 28, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    If you google man beaten to death in just the news section which is recent you get 3300 hits. Somewhere in america more than 1 person will be beaten to death today. This happens. Its a tragedy. I dont think its a phillies story though. I think its an idiot story. Would love to know EXACTLY how the victim was acting. If he was a willing participant in the drinking and brawling. If I go out tonight to an event say a concert and willing get drunk and into a situation with a big brawl is it the artists fault if this happens at his concert?
    The 3 guys if they beat him for no reason should get the death penalty. Regardless they will be going to jail and deserve to go. I am jsut going to put it out there that the victim in this case probably wasnt acting like Mother Theresa that day. I hope the media lets all the information be known when this goes to trial or is settled.

  31. XjasonX

    July 28, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    amazing article…and yes baseball should be a family atmosphere…my thoughts go out to David’s family…

  32. steve

    July 28, 2009 at 1:04 pm

    I agree with everyone that this is an extremely heinous and tragic incident. We can all try to find ways to resolve this from ever happening again, i.e. No tailgaiting, Tickets for entry to McFaddens, etc. However, there is one thing we can’t change and that is the blatent disregard for human beings. I consider myself a diehard phillies season ticket holder and have seen the wildest of things happen outside of CBP (98% in the Jetro lot) attacks on fellow fans, cab drivers and cars. But we can’t allow the national media to focus in on our city and fans and make it seem like this is the only place where incidents like this occur. Pretty sure the Braves had an alcohol related death IN THEIR stadium earlier this year. The Angels had a 28 yr old killed outside their stadium this year in addition to a shooting that injured 2 in their parking lot. we just need to keep asking people to treat the game with respect. and as my mom says “Sh*T in one hand and wish in the other and see what fills up first”

  33. Geoff

    July 28, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    Getting drunk and fighting isnt wholly American, but it has become an American thing too. Very bad. When you see drunk meatheads at bars its either they try and get up on girls theyve never met before and try to steal peoples girlfriends and stuff – usually in a totally classless and embarrassing way. OR WHEN that fails, they attempt to get into a fight.

  34. Andrew

    July 28, 2009 at 1:15 pm

    Ban tailgating? Horrible tragedy here but. Everyone take a step back. This is more about the state of america than the state of the phillies fans. People need to have respect for one another. At a sporting event on the highway or anywhwere.

  35. steve

    July 28, 2009 at 1:18 pm

    agree with you andrew i was saying ban tailgating before games … i was listing all the ideas from previous posts that will not work because of the blatent disregard for fellow man

  36. Dhall

    July 28, 2009 at 1:19 pm

    While I am saddened to hear of this incident I must say I am not at all surprised. There is too much drinking going on at these events. Remove the beer and 99% of these issues will be resolved. Of course it would never happen because it brings in too much revenue for the ballpark, but that would solve the majority of problems. I have no problem with enjoying a couple beers during the game, but the problem is that many people can’t stop with just a couple.

    My wife and I have a partial season ticket package, and we watch a guy (probably in his late 20’s or early 30’s) who sits 2 rows down from us pound beers and make an ass out of himself every time we’re there. The last game we went to, he drank 11 beers by the 6th inning and then got in a fight with his own grandfather who didnt’ want him driving them home in his condition. We also attended the parade last year that culminated at CBP. When the Phillies parade arrived at the ballpark, it was a disgrace. Guys and girls urinating in public in front of families with kids…glass bottles being hurled in the air above the crowds…broken glass all over the place, etc. I was truly embarrassed and it left a stain on the day for us.

    Now you have a young man dead and 2 men (possibly 3) charged with murder, and all over what? A spilled beer.

  37. George

    July 28, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Albert may be right about the victim not being Mother Theresa. But that still doesn’t justify his being beaten to death.

    I agree that bar fights should be reported to police immediately, but even then there will be instances where the cops don’t arrive in time. There probably isn’t any real way to stop idiots completely, but at least some better measures should be in place.

    The real unfortunate thing here is that these thugs will probably be plea bargained down to manslaughter. To me, this was premeditated murder. Premeditation doesn’t always mean elaborate planning; sometimes the planning occurs just seconds ahead of time. Somebody had to hold down the victim while the others stomped; they had to quickly decide that telling him off wasn’t enough to satisfy their own warped thoughts. They had to agree among themselves that someone else’s life was meaningless. This was planned, premeditated thuggery: murder in the first degree. I hate to see these cretins get off in a few years. Like the flies that they are, they should just be eliminated.

  38. Joey

    July 28, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    Good article Pat. No matter how hard we try the national media is going to jump all over every misbehavior of our fans. Absolutely Warranted in this case (maybe not so much in the case of the laser pointer). The only way we can stop it is to still keep the passion that separates us from the rest of the country, but keep violence out of it. Also, tailgating is fine, its part of the fun, but they need to stop letting visibly drunk people in the game and selling them beer.

  39. Dave

    July 28, 2009 at 1:44 pm

    after hearing how the case unfolded my opinion is that the blame should be placed on McFadden’s. They are responsible for creating the situation and they could’ve easily prevented this horrible tragedy from happening. Why isn’t the media addressing that? They pack their bar over capacity, They over serve their patrons and they failed to alert the police in time to stop it. The staff of McFadden’s should be charged as accomplices to the criminals the killed this poor guy because all they did was throw fuel on the fire and watch it burn. I myself will never set foot in that place again.

  40. joedad

    July 28, 2009 at 1:50 pm

    I don’t think “the media” will jump over Philly fans over this incident because a young man died. “The media” can harrass Philly about booing Santa Clause or throwing snowballs or the jail at the vet because they, all things considered, aren’t all that serious. This is a serious issue and should be treated as such.

  41. Don M

    July 28, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    Dave that is a little/a lot over the top …

    Do we know that the 3 guys that jumped the kid were among the ones fighting inside the bar? And when there is about 30 people fighting in the bar.. the quickest and best thing to do is kick them out..

    they should have tried to seperate the two parties.. and got cops involved..

    I see cops on every corner down there, every game.. so im not sure how all this happened without the police seeing and stopping it.

    The actual incident that lead to this kid being murdered was in the parking lot, not on McFadden’s property..

    the excessive drinking and crowds is another issue.. but to place all the blame on the bar is too much. changes will be made down there to limit this behavior, you can count on it

  42. Pingback: Baseballbriefs.com

  43. Jim

    July 28, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    What does this have to do with phillies fans??

    This could have happened at anytime at anywhere, it just happened to be aftera phillies game involving fans.

  44. Stuart

    July 28, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Anyone who blames philly is an idiot. something like this happened outside a cubs game a few years back. a couple years ago wiffle ball bats were the give away at a cubs game and a group beat a guy to death with them.

    its not just philly and i hate that people say it is

  45. Steve

    July 28, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    Yes, this is/was a terrible incident and the guilty parties should be punished for their crime. While it is of great concern that this terrible crime took place i think quite a few people are overreacting.

    Do people honestly believe that people are only getting drunk and disorderly at Phillies games. Anyone ever manage to go up to old yankee stadium and sit near the “Bleacher creatures”?

    These guys did not kill someone b/c of some beers. They killed b/c they were repeat violent offenders. It should also be noted that one of the offenders was found guilty of a similiar crime and the judge let him off with anger management. Also, where were the cops or those guys with the yellow jackets who take 12 bucks off me everytime I go down there. Where were the other fans to help stop this?

    Stuff like this has occured in other ballparks- Angels, Dodgers, Mets, etc. This is not unique to the phillies or Philadelphia. Now we have people on here talking about outright banning tailgaiting, banning beer sales, entrance to McFaddens with only a game ticket, etc. Why not have retnal and finger print scans? Better yet lets all sign waivers upon purchasing a beer or have designated standing areas within a bar.

  46. Don M

    July 28, 2009 at 3:53 pm

    The shame of it is, that other fans probably didn’t step in, because these guys were part of a group of 30+ people… and who knows who carries guns, knives or what anymore..

    I’d like to think I would’ve tried to stop this if I was there, but I really have no idea.. people probably wanted to and maybe just froze in fear?

    it isn’t just related to beer.. but that played a part..

    the fact that people go to jail for say, Marijuana possesion.. but people that are accused of violent assualts only have to go to anger management classes is a joke

  47. Michael

    July 28, 2009 at 4:17 pm

    This was a very well-written editorial. I too am a Phillies and have grown sick and tired of the behavior of some rude fans. When discussing this tragic murder with friends and co-workers they responded simply with, “That’s Philadelphia for you”. No. This is not Philadelphia, but everyone is aware of our reputation. And honestly, our fanbase does have it’s fair share of rude and confrontational individuals. More-so than what I have witnessed at any games in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Yankees or Mets.

    A friend of mine brought up an interesting aspect recently that all Phillies fans should consider. Should the Phillies fail to be a top-notch team in the years to come, a large portion of the stadium’s revenue comes from visiting teams (e.g. Mets, Nationals, etc.) Do we really want to have a stadium with no visitors from the opposing side? I don’t. I enjoy the competition and rivalries. A friend of mine is a die-hard New York Mets fan and the behavior and remarks made to him at Citizens Bank Park have made him refuse to ever attend a Mets/Phillies game in Philadelphia.

    As said before, let this tragedy be turned into an event that can remind us how to be proper and respectful fans. And remember people, it’s a game. It’s supposed to be fun. If we wanted confrontation and hassles we could just stay at work and save a lot of money.

  48. ryan

    July 28, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    this happens in every city. and the people who think it doesn’t, are simply buying into a stereotype that is total BS. this isn’t even the first murder at a ballpark this year. opening day for the dodgers somebody was stabbed to death right in the damn stands. last year same thing happened at wrigley field in chicago.

  49. Don M

    July 28, 2009 at 4:27 pm

    you want to know how ridiculous our city and fans really are though..???

    Go on YouTube and see how many different fights there are during the World Series Championship Parade … on the greatest day in Philadelphia Sports History.. people were getting in fights with one another.

    Our city is White Trash to the fullest.. im done even trying to defend it anymore..

    Yes it happens in other cities too.. is that something we should be proud of, or use to defend why our fans act like morons? This was the same day some knucklehead with a laser pointer was interupting the game too..

  50. Thomas Joseph

    July 28, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    I’ve got to admit, was thinking about getting up to Philly to watch them play the Mets sometime. Philly is closer, and what the heck, I haven’t seen the new stadium so I thought I’d give it a whirl.

    Forget it now. I can take heckling, because obviously I’d be supporting my team, which isn’t your team. But if some of your idiot fans will kill one of their own … I can honestly say I’m not liking my chances to be treated civilly.

  51. Pat Gallen, Phils Examiner

    July 28, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Philadelphia is notorious for this, and its a damn shame. There are great people in this city.

    Don M, I agree there are many, many less than savory characters in this town. And when you live here, and get to witness it first hand, it hurts. However, every major city has this same problem. Unfortunately for Philly, this had to happen at a time when the Phillies are great and people are paying attention to the city on a National level. Its true, our crime rate is embarrassing. Still, it’s happened in other towns (see LAofAnaheim).

    I was very upset to see people fighting at the World Series parade. This tough guy act needs to go. But it wont. People believe the way to get respect is to fight or kill. Its unfortunate, but it’s not just Philly. I wanted to press that point.

    As for what David Sale was doing at the time is a moot point. If he wanted to fight (which people do from time to time) then he at least deserved a fair one. Not 3 on 1. I’m not condoning the action of fighting, but lets face it, people fist fight all the time. I’m so reluctant anymore to even bump into people at a bar or gathering spot because of fear that it might be the wrong person. A friend of mine was punched in the face at a bar because the guy THOUGHT he was someone else who had “looked at his Girl”. Sad, but its all true.

    Best we can do is be the civil ones at the ball park.

  52. chris

    July 28, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    The sad thing is i really feel it couldve been prevented. Mcfaddens gets WAY over packed, you cant walk through that place without spilling your own or someone elses beer. They need to lower the limit of people allowed in… Not that anyone should be fighting over a spilled beer that costs $5 anyway.

    I also dont think that anyone without a ticket to the baseball game has any business being on any of those four blocks/parking lots/stadiums. theres plenty of bars in south philly, go to one of them. So many people are going there just to tailgate. They dont have tickets to the game or even interest in seeing the game they think tailgating is a sport.

  53. Pat Gallen, Phils Examiner

    July 28, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Thomas Joseph, I’m sorry you feel that way. But again, I understand it.

    Nobody wants to have to put up with the BS at the park when they have paid big money to enjoy a game.

  54. Pat Gallen

    July 28, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    And Chris, I agree with you too. Only paying customers should be allowed into McFaddens. It gets so ridiculous in there and with all of that testosterone flying, fights are bound to happen.

  55. Miles

    July 28, 2009 at 7:38 pm

    @Dhall and others who are seem to be blaming alcohol alone, I just don’t see it that way. There is a difference between being a jackass and needing to be told by a security guard to behave and beating the life out of someone. The guys who committed the crime are criminals through and through, a bar only served as the launching pad for the incident. With morons like the ones who were involved, this incident could have happened without alcohol in another circumstance.

    The issue of people acting inappropriately due to alcohol at the ballgame is a seperate issue for me. It has nothing to do with getting into a fight at a BAR, where people should expect a few idiots to be inappropriate. I’m not saying its NOT an issue, because it is, but its a totally seperate issue.

  56. Keith E

    July 28, 2009 at 10:49 pm

    Hang those three jack asses and then give them a fair trial.

  57. Mike L

    August 11, 2009 at 12:36 am

    Is there anyone out there who witnessed this fight. Two of the men being accused weren’t even in McFadden’s. They were back at the bus. And how does a group of twenty to thirty people have no witnesses. Jetro has no cameras. McFadden’s has cameras but like I said, two of them weren’t on camera because they weren’t even there when the fighting started in the bar or when it spilled outside. Witnesses were never given a lineup. These guys will have no DNA on them. Nothing. Because they weren’t there when Dave Sale went down. Don’t judge these guys just yet. If there are any witnesses out there, do the right thing and report the real people responsible, because the police sure haven’t done their job by intimidating the smallest most uneducated guy in the group and threatening him with jail time. He’d have said anything to save his ass. If there is a video out there I’d love to see it. And so would the proper authorities.

  58. Noel

    August 11, 2009 at 2:50 am

    It’s very sad and i get so angry, some people are cowards.. I’m from New York and i love the Phillies since 1993.

  59. SAM M

    August 13, 2009 at 9:57 am

    I’ve read all the posts here so: This is for the average 20-30 something (like me) that party’s hard at these types of Functions – everywhere in the world….and for all the witnesses to this crime.

    I was at Mcfaddens (after a couple hours of friendly Tailgaiting)- I’m pretty sure I picked up the mostly full Coors light that fell on the floor during one of the fights around the time they started kicking people out. We got into the game with tickets from people exiting and enjoyed the last couple innings… so don’t blame me for not stepping in…

    Tailgating, verbal rivalry, wanting to be near the action at a local Bar (McDrunkards – since this field is located in a parking lot, not a city), Bar Fights, heavy drinking will never stop…

    BUT a guy died here… LET’s LEARN SOMETHING HERE:

    -Ganging up on a dude even if provoked
    (I’m talking post beer spill here – lets get the facts)
    -Not stopping your friends when they gang up on a guy
    -Holding back other guys who are trying to save their friend from being beaten to death
    -Not being able to contain yourself physically, drunk or not INSIDE a stadium around other innocents
    -IS FOR THE WEAK AND AMATUER – OR PREDISPOSED violent types-

    -Stomping always ends up in Death, major Brain Damage/organ failure – DON’T DO THAT.
    -Cops should be called when large groups are ejected from the Stadium/McFaddens same thing

    -Whatever happened to letting 2 dudes go at it…and when someone looked beat or wanted to back out before it started – where’s the attackers friends who should step in and say STOP it’s OVER you won…

    -For the Fishtown guy that has the balls to implicate the 3…LEAVE HIM ALONE, he’s not a rat, you guys aren’t the mob trying to protect a business and a way of life…your shit is schoolyard

    -If your pissed at the police for doing a lame job, then give them a statement of what you know – ACT LIKE A MAN!

    -The 3 animals…(it sounds like they all had a hand in this -can’t simply blame Kirchners “Football head Kick”)
    -I hope they get everything coming to them and for the witnesses who didn’t step in:
    – It’s not to late to give the cops a statement, everybody wants the truth here OR
    – thank your lucky stars that you are not being pulled in as accomplices…and cut a check to the David Sale Fund and pray for forgiveness. Google it now…it only takes seconds. DO IT.

  60. Jack

    August 20, 2009 at 4:49 am

    this incident hits close to home and ill tell you why. i feel horrible saying this, given that ive just learned the victim’s identity despite knowing about the incident at the time it happened. but several people on here are wondering how the victim was acting… i cant speak first hand of this particular night, though ironically i was at this game. but i had an altercation with dave about a month before this tragedy at a house party in bucks county.. and he was trying to pick a fight over a similar beer related matter. a beer pong game to be more specific. he totally had it in his eyes and his demeanor that he was out for trouble, despite several efforts of mutual friends of ours that it was trivial and stupid to do so. he ran his mouth a lot and to both our luck i shook it off and realized that we were better than that. like i said i have no idea what provoked this senseless incident, no idea who started what… it doesnt matter. no one deserves to go out like that. the guilty should be thrown in a hole and left to rot because they obviously do not know how to draw the line between dishing out a lesson and inhumane brutality. but i will say for the record that this dave was probably not an innocent bystander on this night. he could have just as easily been on the other end of the beating stick.

    the point is that the issue is with irresponsible drinking behavior, which i see first hand all the time, be it in philly or elsewhere.

  61. Matt Mullen

    August 22, 2009 at 9:15 pm

    I think we all have to step back,remember people are innocent till proven guilty,that said,whoever did this deserves to be punished,but until all the facts are in place why waste energy on bashing Jim Groves,I ve know him since we were 10 y/o. and my heart tells me he’d never do this.I pray I m right.He also has no crimial record.
    I also pray for the victims family,no one desserves what happened to that boy on that day,my heart goes out to them.

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    June 7, 2010 at 6:49 am

    We’re beginning to hear the first rumblings about the next round of updates to the Nissan GT-R, and if the rumors are to be believed, Nissan’s goal of keeping pace with the refreshed Porsche 911 Turbo (and its S sibling) will continue through the 2012 model year. As with its German counterpart, the R35 is expected to undergo a host of evolutionary changes, including some reworked aero bits, suspension and brake upgrades, and a retuned 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6 that’s likely to output over 500 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque.

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