Dave Jageler now a part of foul ball history at Marlins Park: 'Look out Dave!'

Chris Lingebach
April 22, 2019 - 4:17 pm

Nationals radio announcer Dave Jageler unknowingly became a part of Marlins Park history Saturday night as a foul ball screamed into the visiting broadcast booth.

"That was the first ball in the history of Marlins Park ever to go into a broadcast booth," Jageler explained to Chad Dukes on 106.7 The Fan. "It's a pretty high and set back broadcast booth, so they've never had one in there."

The Nationals' radio broadcast was in prime position to capture history. The microphones picked up every second of the foul ball clanging around the booth, including the instantaneous reaction of Charlie Slowes, who was handling play-by-play duties that inning, alerting Jageler to "look out!"

"Fastball coming back, fouled our way," Slowes described on the call. "Look out Dave! Right into the booth!"

"For us, it's the first one we've had since RFK," Jageler told Dukes. "We had one in the booth in RFK in like '06 or '07, but in Nationals Park obviously you're not going to get one in there, so it's been probably 12, 13 years since we've had one in the booth."

The broadcast booth at Nats Park is situated about seven floors up, so it's awfully unlikely a foul ball will ever reach that far. Given the history of foul balls in both parks, you could imagine Jageler's surprise when Nats second baseman Brian Dozier sent a foul ball on a rocket ship toward his face.

Dukes was a little disappointed to hear Jageler didn't "reach up and bare-hand that thing." There was a reason for this.

"Here's the thing. Charlie's doing the play by play, the Nationals are down, whatever, five or six runs, and I'm kind of hungry and I'm having a snack," Jageler explained himself. "And it's not a 7-Eleven cheeseburger, it's an apple. Let me be honest, it's a healthy snack and so I'm mid-bite. So I'm not really locked in or zoned in on the pitch, and all of a sudden I see it coming back to me.

"If I had been locked in on the pitch, I probably would have tried to make a play, but this thing's coming back quick, and so my instinct is to duck to the right."

"It grazes the iPad, hits my big water bottle – knocks that to the ground – and then hits the wall directly behind my head and comes to a stop under Charlie's chair," he said. "The thing was like a pinball. And so I pick it up and I hold it up in the air, trying to convince somebody that I did catch it. I'm on the bus after the game and Doolittle goes, 'Hey, you caught that foul ball?' So I fooled somebody."

"I came clean on it, though," Jageler went on. "The Marlins' television actually – MASN didn't show it – but Marlins' television kind of zoned in on our booth. I went back and watched it on the archive, you can see me at the beginning of the shot kind of crawl under Charlie's chair, pick it up and then stand up. So I kind of gave myself away on that shot, but I held it aloft like I was victorious, like I was champion of the world."

"I wish you were more nefarious, Jags. I wish you kept up the kayfabe," Dukes joked. "You would have been a conquering hero throughout that entire process if you had just lied through your teeth."

"Well, the sound does me in. I mean, you heard the sound effect," Jageler said. "I mean, that thing was coming back angry. And it banged around about three different times and Jack's microphones picked up all of it. And the iPad, too. I would have been going to Brian Dozier asking for a check if that had not survived."

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