It looks like someone crashed the Marlins-Braves game at Fort Bragg on Sunday night, and it's causing quite the uproar. Self-proclaimed baseball collector Zack Hample tweeted an image of a baseball he obtained during the special event, sparking a significant amount of criticism on Twitter.
Fort Bragg commemorative baseballs? Oh yes! Martin Prado just tossed this to me after the 3rd inning. pic.twitter.com/OQoGJfExbR— Zack Hample (@zack_hample) July 4, 2016
I just snagged a baseball at my 52nd MLB stadium. So excited to be here at Fort Bragg! pic.twitter.com/xT46d6jhIO— Zack Hample (@zack_hample) July 3, 2016
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Hample, who claims to have been to 51 different MLB stadiums and caught A-Rod's 3,000th hit, apparently was offering $1,000 to anyone on the U.S. Army post to bring him to the game as a guest. The game was closed to the general public, only to be attended by Department of Defense employees and their family.
Once word spread of Hample's tweet, the criticism came quickly. The 82nd Airborne Division's Twitter account had some advice for the baseball collector.
Delete your account. https://t.co/DHYwUuRHbL— 82nd Airborne Div (@82ndABNDiv) July 4, 2016
And this is the real issue. https://t.co/y5VajGoIyS— 82nd Airborne Div (@82ndABNDiv) July 4, 2016
Others in the baseball community took aim at Hample, even the notorious Marlins fan who has a penchant for showing up to sporting events in the hopes of being seen.
@zack_hample Zack, that game CLOSED to NON department of Defense Employees and their family. Give any balls u have to kids and leave. NOW.— Marlins_Man (@Marlins_Man) July 4, 2016
It looks like Hample had been planning to attend this game for a few weeks.
My phone is blowing up. @MLB to play a regular season game at Fort Bragg?! Wow. You can bet your ass I'll be there -- stadium No. 52 for me.— Zack Hample (@zack_hample) March 8, 2016
@bradrayborn363 I'm not making any plans that weekend in case I find a way to attend the game at Fort Bragg.— Zack Hample (@zack_hample) May 9, 2016
Hample tried to defuse the situation, claiming to have given away almost all the balls he collected at the game.
I got 11 balls today and gave 10 away. As promised, I'll be writing an $1,100 check to https://t.co/B7S73jb999. Please everyone, calm down.— Zack Hample (@zack_hample) July 4, 2016
But that attempt appears to have done little for his reputation.