We’ve gotta continue the Jim Rice love today. Oddly, another one of Rice’s well-known “accomplishments” – aside from his sheer dominance in baseball for 12 years – involves a trip into the stands. This time not out of compassion for the safety of a young fan, but out of pure, red-hot badassery. I couldn’t find a true news story but the legend is well-documented on many blogs. Here is the synopsis from Postgame Spread:

The infamous incident a couple weeks later when a typical jackass Yankee fan grabbed Rice’s hat and tried to shove it down his own pants as Jim Ed chased after him. I remember watching TV38 and the cameras watching Jim, staring this douchebag down until he surrendered the hat. Lots of other folks jumped in,
including noted roidbag Roger Clemens. Jim Ed jumping into the stands that day sets the standard for running-into-the-stands behavior. Do it for a good reason, and don’t punch nobody. (Future entrants would not follow these ground rules.)

I have a vague memory of watching the game myself, complete with Bob Montgomery play-by-play and plaid jacket, but it is very fuzzy (like every other memory I have of the eighties). Red can confirm, but I believe La Shelle Tarver had Jim Ed’s back, launching himself into the stands with bat in hand to lay down some justice and retrieve the stolen hat. What I would pay for video of this…