ESPN reports that an 18-year old New York Mets fan who forged a press pass and impersonated a reporter, in order to meet his idol Mike Piazza and interview him, has been fined $1,000 and banned from all Mets organization home games for three years.
Ryan Leli will not be able to attend Mets home games, nor Brooklyn Cyclones home games, nor Mets spring training games. And the $1,000 fine is at least a couple of weeks' pay on his paper route. Said the no-nonsense Mets organization:
"This is a message to anyone who thinks they can impersonate a press person and sneak in," Mets spokesman Jay Horwitz said, according to The New York Times. "We take this seriously and if anybody else tries it, they'll get the same result."
Before you start thinking that Horwitz and the rest of crackpot Mets staff was sharp enough to identify an 18-year-old kid who shows up in the clubhouse for the first time in August (when the Padres came to Shea Stadium), consider this: Leli was only ejected from the clubhouse when he tried to pose for a picture with Piazza. And even then, he was not arrested until he tried to come back a week later and use the same forged pass for another game against the Rockies.
I suppose he could always try disguising himself in that Barry-Bonds-head-sized Mr. Met costume to maneuver his way into the clubhouse. (Although said maneuvering, even if orchestral and in the dark, would not be much of a secret if he tries to get another player interview by talking loud and clear, and then proceeds to call my name only to find then you turn away. Take SoSG's advice, Ryan: If you leave, don't look back. Don't look back!)
By the way, the Oakland Athletics' security staff has no idea what you look like.