Dude, you're getting a cell
Fan faces assault charges for hitting Everett with phonePosted: Sunday April 20, 2003 9:16 PM
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- A 24-year-old man accused of throwing a cell phone that hit Texas right fielder Carl Everett in the back of the head during a game faces a charge of assault with a deadly weapon.
Juan-Carlos Covarrubias-Serrano, of Palo Alto, was arrested during the Rangers' 12-2 loss to the Oakland Athletics on Saturday after fans pointed him out to authorities, and after Everett alerted stadium security.
The phone was thrown from the second deck of the Coliseum, said David Rinetti, the A's vice president of stadium operations. Covarrubias-Serrano was intoxicated, Rinetti said, and will be arraigned on Tuesday.
He was being held on $15,000 bail.
"I don't think this guy wanted to wake up on Easter morning in prison," Rinetti said. "Hopefully he learned a valuable lesson."
Security was heightened for Sunday's game. Rinetti said staffing was increased and a uniformed police officer was stationed at the visitor's bullpen. In addition, an in-house video monitoring system was being used to monitor the right-field area.
Everett was hit four days after umpire Laz Diaz was attacked by a fan at U.S. Cellular field in Chicago during a White Sox-Royals game.
Sandy Alderson, a vice president of baseball operations in the commissioner's office, flew from the New York area to Oakland early Sunday to deal with the issue.
Alderson said he hopes fan violence is not becoming a trend.
"I think we've had fan incursions over the years on the field," Alderson said before Sunday's game. "Typically, they're not serious. As they become more frequent there is a chance they will become more serious. We want to stop these things before they escalate.
"When they do happen, we have to set an example for anyone else with the remote idea of doing something like this."
Everett plans to press charges. When asked if he was satisfied with the beefed up security, Everett said, "It always should have been that way."
"This crowd has always been surly," Everett said. "They throw stuff all the time."
Everett was in right field again for Sunday's game, though manager Buck Showalter met with Everett before putting him in the lineup.
"Carl would kind of like to play right field tonight knowing him," said Showalter, who spoke to Rinetti before the game.
"They're doing everything that their manpower allows. Carl and I talked a little bit. I don't want the stupidity of one fan to keep us from trying to win the baseball game tonight. But I also want to be confident in the safety of players."
Everett complained to umpires before the start of the top of the sixth inning that he had been hit. He tossed the phone back over the fence. It hit Daniel Sugayan, an A's staff member, but he was not hurt.
Rinetti said the A's would continue to use extra security whenever they determine it's needed.
"We kind of know certain players who get more rise out of the crowd," he said. "Everett fits the mold."
Seattle right fielder Ichiro Suzuki was hit with coins in Oakland during his rookie season in 2001.
Texas' Rafael Palmeiro said he has never been hit with anything by fans, but he is concerned for players' safety.
"I don't know the answer," he said. "I'm sure everything they do is a help and a positive."