As It Happens

Chicago Cubs fan says Dubble Bubble bucket saved him from falling scoreboard pin

Kyle McAleer had to get five staples in his head after a big metal pin from the Wrigley Field scoreboard fell on him during a Chicago Cubs game last week.

'If you ask me I think it definitely could have fractured my skull,' says Kyle McAleer

Kyle McAleer, right, says he's lucky he was wearing a bucket on his head last week when a piece of the Wrigley Stadium scoreboard fell on him. (Submitted by Kyle McAleer)
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Kyle McAleer had to get five staples in his head after a big metal pin from the Wrigley Field scoreboard fell on him during a Chicago Cubs game last week.

But he said it could have been much worse if he didn't have a Dubble Bubble bucket on his head at the time.

"This is all speculation and I'm no doctor ... but if you ask me, I think it definitely could have fractured my skull and caused a pretty traumatic brain injury," the Cubs fan told As It Happens guest host Piya Chattopadhyay.

'Blood just came running out'

McAleer was at the stadium with friends and family on July 26 to watch the Cubs take on the Arizona Diamondbacks.

He, his father and his friend were all sporting buckets on their heads as a way of cheering on their favourite team during a losing streak.

The Cubs were down and they had just put the buckets on when a six-to-eight-inch metal pin fell off the stadium's famous green scoreboard and crashed directly onto McAleer's head.

McAleer shot a selfie under the scoreboard, left, before a piece of it fell off and hit him in the head, sending him to hospital with a laceration, right. (Submitted by Kyle McAleer)

"I thought, man, someone must have, like, smacked the top of my head or something because it was really loud. My ears were ringing," McAleer said.

"There was some considerable pain, but most of that pain was shielded by the fact that I was more shocked and terrified, because I didn't know what it was. I didn't know what happened. The bucket was forced down over my eyes, so I couldn't see anything and I didn't really know how badly I was hurt."

Dubble Bubble sent McAleer some loot after he was injured while wearing one of its buckets on his head. (Submitted by Kyle McAleer)

His glasses had been knocked off his face, so he took the bucket off and bent over to retrieve them, he said.

"When I looked down, a whole bunch of blood just came running out my head and I was bleeding pretty bad," he said.

McAleer ended up in hospital with a two-inch laceration on his head. He estimates the pin that hit him weighed several pounds.

"Luckily, that bucket was there," he said.

'Freak accident'

Cubs spokesman Julian Green told the Chicago Tribune the accident happened because of  "a loose pin that rolled out of the scoreboard when the tile was being changed," adding "there are no loose pins and the scoreboard is secure."

McAleer said he believes the team and doesn't hold any grudges.

"I've got full confidence and faith that the Cubs have taken the appropriate steps to secure those pegs," he said. "It was just merely a freak accident."

The team has invited him back out to a game of his choosing — free of charge with full VIP treatment. He said he plans to take them up on the offer.

"The one thing that I'm upset about the most is that I missed the seventh-inning stretch because at Wrigley all 40,000 people, even the opposing fans ... sing the seventh-inning stretch in the crowd," he said.

"That's a feeling that I crave when I go to Wrigley Field."

Written by Sheena Goodyear. Produced by Sarah Jackson.


An earlier version of this story said the pin was six by eight inches long. In fact it was six to eight inches long.

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