ARLINGTON, Texas – A male fan was knocked unconscious after falling 21 feet in a stairwell while leaving Rangers Ballpark on Saturday night in what police were investigating as an accident.
Police Lt. Bobby Mason said early Sunday that investigators were still trying to determine exactly how the 24-year-old man fell while leaving the stadium. The stairwell, near the home plate gate out of sight from the field, consists of a series of flights of steps leading from the upper deck of seats to ground level.
"It doesn't appear that there's any foul play that's involved," Mason said after talking to people who were in the man's group and other witnesses. "There wasn't any fighting or anything like that going on."
Mason said his understanding was that the man's condition was improving after being transported to a hospital. There was some blood in the area where the man fell.
"At this point in time, hopefully it's going to be better than what we thought when he left," Mason said.
On July 7, Brownwood firefighter Shannon Stone died less than an hour after tumbling over a railing and falling about 20 feet to concrete behind the left-field wall. He had reached out to catch a baseball tossed his way during a game.
The Rangers said in a statement after their 8-4 loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night that the team was monitoring reports of the man's condition. The injured fan got immediate attention at the stadium after falling about 9:45 p.m. and was then taken to a local hospital, the team said.
The accident occurred before the end of the game so the stairwell wasn't yet crowded with fans, Mason said. The man was with a group of people that he attended the game with.
Mason and other Arlington police officials were still on the scene nearly 2 1/2 hours after the game ended.
"What we can say for sure is, for whatever reason, he falls from the railing area up there between the third and second landing, and he fell 21 feet," Mason said.
Rangers spokesman John Blake said the team had no other information. Team president Nolan Ryan was aware of the accident.