Jury Awards $850,000 in Baseball Bat Lawsuit

A Montana jury awarded $850,000 in compensatory damages to the parents of an 18-year-old who died in 2003 in a baseball game. The teen, who was pitching, was hit in the head by a line drive hit with an aluminum bat. The family sued that bat’s maker, Hillerich & Bradsby, for failing to place warnings on the bat informing users of the bat’s potential dangers.

The manufacturer responded strongly to the verdict, stating that the bat was made in accordance with all approved standards, and contended that the same tragedy could have occurred with a wood bat. The verdict was “an indictment of the entire sport of baseball,” a spokesperson said.

Notably, the jury found that the bat was not a defective product, but that the failure to adequately warn the users of the foreseeable risks made the product dangerous. According to reports, the judge is still considering an award of punitive damages.

This was not the first lawsuit against Hillerich & Bradsby. Last year, a 12-year-old boy sued the company after suffering brain damage when he was struck by a line drive. And in 2002, a teen age pitcher was hit in the head by a line drive and suffered severe head injuries.

Source: New York Times

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