Baseball great Reggie Jackson is denying that he pushed, or otherwise got physical with, an autograph-seeking fan at a Cooperstown restaurant Friday night, The New York Daily News is reporting.
Jackson was in Cooperstown, New York, Friday for the weekend Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremonies. While most current Hall of Famers were at HoF chairman Jane Clark’s party at her home, Jackson opted to go to a downtown restaurant — Mt. Fuji Sushi & Hibachi Cuisine — with some friends instead.
While at the restaurant, other diners took notice of Jackson, and some started asking for autographs. Jackson was accommodating to at least some of the autograph-seekers, but he apparently drew the line at a fan who got an autograph, and then wanted another one.
In a video provided by TMZ, Jackson can be heard using a stream of profanities against the autograph-seeker.
“I already signed one, and you go back to the f—— line and come up again. That’s f—– up. Now it’s my time to eat dinner with people I seldom see. It’s f—– up. Pay for them like everybody else.”
Reggie Jackson, like many retired baseball players, charges fans for autographs when he appears at baseball memorabilia shows and similar events. Autograph-collecting blogger “CEE GEE” claims that Jackson charges $100 for autographs. He also claims that Jackson was rude and aloof during their meeting in 2011.
The fan then said something to Jackson, which set off a physical confrontation. It’s unclear if Jackson touched the autograph-seeker, but what is obvious is that several people in the restaurant, including some in Jackson’s entourage, began scuffling with one another.
TMZ claims to have seen another video, in which Jackson can be seen screaming at a security guard.
“You guys disperse the motherf***ers, tell them to get the f*** away from me! I need a f***ing bodyguard to keep them the f*** away.”
Jackson admitted to the confrontation with the fan, speaking to the Daily News on Saturday, but he denied physically touching him.
“I used profanity. I told him no autographs but I did not touch him.”
This is not Reggie Jackson’s first time being involved in a scuffle with an autograph-seeking fan. At least once during his playing days, he got physical with a fan: in 1986, while he was still playing, Jackson was charged with battery after roughing up a fan at a Milwaukee bar, according to The L.A. Times.
[Image courtesy of: Getty Images/Ed Zurga]