Best of '12: Baseball Nation's favorite GIFs, part VI

Kevin C. Cox

In this episode, we look into the stands to see what people are doing.

We've heard from the children in the stands, but what of the adults who brought them there in the first place? I often talked with Jeff Sullivan about how life needs a GIF machine. When someone walks into a door that reads "push", when a waiter spills soup on someone's lap, or when that dude on the bus is staring at nothing with his mouth totally open, there should be a GIF machine at your disposal.

Cameras trained on the stands are about as close as we'll get. Here are fans who came to a baseball game to watch a spirited contest with sticks and orbs, but became the center of attention for a split second.

4. This guy

Your mileage may vary, of course, but this one hypnotizes me. Is it the shirt? The smirk? The eyes? The slow zoom? The overall John Waters vibe? I was watching this game live, and I can report that there was absolutely no reason for a fan to be standing at this point of the game. The catcher was jogging back from a mound visit, I believe. But this guy didn't care.

Also of note: The shaking disembodied head next to him. Life needs a GIFfing machine.

3. Skill

This happens dozens of times every year -- the law of large numbers demands it, really. A guy makes a nice catch in the stands, and everyone fetes him for a minute before returning to the game. No big deal.

But this is one of my favorites because of the degree of difficulty. It was one-handed, sure, but the more important part is the trough of popcorn he's carrying. Look at how much stuff the dude's carrying. I didn't even know they made trays that big -- that's three beverages and four popcorns. And whoever designed the tray certainly didn't intend for it to be carried with one hand. He didn't spill a drop or a kernel. All around great work.

2. Resourceful

This is one to Zapruder until you can't stand it. Is there a kid in there? No, no. There couldn't be. But then where's the kid? Well … huh. And why did she have the car seat on her lap? Did she have that on her lap the whole game? There are just so many mysteries here.

There is a kid in the frame -- a toddler, just under the scrum of fellows angling for a free baseball. After the projectile lands, someone figured it would be a nice idea to protect her. That's super.




It's actually interesting that you don't see this more often with in-the-stands reporting. Because it sure looks like doing that would be the funnest thing in the entire world. This could have been an overtly crude gesture, and that would have provided cheap thrills at the expense of its staying power. Instead, it's BRLRRRZZLAAXRAHRRRRALALAAFFFRRZZZ, it's a full-body experience, and it's perfect.

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