When I went to baseball games as a kid I always wanted a foul ball. If one was close to where I was sitting I always took off running for it. I got close a few times but I was always beaten out by a bigger kid or an adult who wanted it for themselves.

That doesn’t happen in Detroit thanks to Bill Dugan.  A 39-year-old fan of the Tigers has mastered the art of catching foul balls. His record haul in one day is 8 foul balls. He caught four during batting practice and four during the game. This past Monday when the Tigers played the Pirates, Dugan brought in five more foul balls.


Instead of being selfish and taking them back home with him ,Dugan gave all five away to young fans nearby him.  I can only imagine the response and the elation of the child when he handed them the foul balls. If that happened to me when I was a kid it would have sent me over the moon and made my freaking day!

Dugan has become a legend among the young Detroit Tigers fans that visit the games. The kids that know how Dugan is bring others by his seat to meet him and see the “foul ball guy.”  Dugan’s reputation has got to the level that he has a waiting list of kids to give his next foul ball to.

It’d be very easy for Bill Dugan to keep these baseballs for himself.  He could try to sell them on e-bay or just keep them as souvenirs. Bill Dugan doesn’t do that. He remembers what it feels like to chase a foul ball as a kid. He chooses to not be selfish and to make a kid’s day when he catches a foul ball.

The young baseball fan in me is jealous there wasn’t a guy like Bill Dugan around when I was chasing foul balls. The adult baseball fan in me is glad that people like Bill Dugan exist.

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