Shannon Stone, a 39-year-old firefighter from Brownwood, was trying to catch a ball thrown by by Texas outfielder Josh Hamilton during the second inning of the match between the Texas Rangers and Oakland at the Rangers Ballpark when he fell.
Though conscious shortly afterward, he later died from the impact.
After reaching out to catch the ball, the Stone’s momentum took him over the railings and he fell approximately 20 feet - head first - to a paved area behind the scoreboard, hitting a metal cross beam on the way down, incurring fatal injuries in the process.
Ronnie Hargis was sitting in the stands next to the victim, who was at the game with his young son. The men were talking to each other before the accident.
"He went straight down. I tried to grab him but I couldn't," Hargis said. "I tried to slow him down a little bit." Although witnesses said the man appeared conscious as he was taken away on a stretcher, officials said he died on the way to the hospital.
"We are deeply saddened that the man who fell has passed away as a result of this tragic accident," Rangers president Nolan Ryan said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with his family."
The accident happens almost one year to the day that another fan fell 30 feet from the second level of the ballpark. Local firefighter Tyler Morris survived with only a fractured skull, broken ankle and broken foot.