08/13/09 11:24 PM ET
Cubs fan charged with battery, illegal conduct
Twenty-one-year-old faces two misdemeanors after tossing beer
By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
Johnny Macchione, 21, of Bartlett, Ill., was charged with battery and illegal conduct in a sports facility, both misdemeanors, stemming from the incident at Wrigley Field on Wednesday night, according to the Associated Press.
"It was a big mistake. I'd like to apologize to Shane Victorino," Macchione told reporters after bonding out of the Belmont Area Police Headquarters on Thursday night. "It really is nothing against him. It was a mistake, like I said.
"The Chicago Cubs -- I'm sorry I disgraced you, the fans of the Cubs, myself, my family. And that's all. The courts will handle itself."
The Cubs and Victorino filed a complaint against the unruly fan who doused the Phillies center fielder in the fifth inning of Chicago's 12-5 loss. Cubs chairman Crane Kenney met with Victorino on Thursday and apologized for the incident.
"I said, 'Listen, we're sorry, it shouldn't have happened here,'" Kenney said. "'It's not a good reflection on our city or our organization and we're going to do whatever we can to make sure that things are made right here.' And [Victorino] said, 'Listen, I know you are and I appreciate your help.'"
The Cubs do have security in the bleachers, and Kenney said he wasn't sure what other steps the team could take.
"What are you going to do?" Kenney said. "We serve beer and people sit in the bleachers. If you think about how many years we've gone with no issues of any kind, including situations where we had our fans in some way animated about our own players, where they weren't favorable towards them -- so this is an isolated instance. [We'll] handle it the right way, we think, with the police.
"The Phillies have been great. We apologized to the Phillies. Shane's been terrific about it, and he's cooperating, as we are, with the [Chicago Police Department], and we'll let them take it from here."
A fan was immediately ushered away after the incident -- Victorino was showered as he caught Jake Fox's sacrifice fly in the fifth inning -- but the person apprehended was not the right one.
"I didn't even know it was happening," Victorino said. "It didn't affect me at all."
He did not want to press charges but said he would file a complaint with the Chicago police.
"We'll look for him, and we'll hand it over to the police," Victorino said before the fan turned himself in. "If I file a complaint, they'll at least go get the guy. If I press charges, he gets arrested. He's probably at home laughing right now watching all these replays, 'Ah, they got the wrong guy. I got away with it.'
"We're going to get the right guy."
"It should never happen," Kenney said. "I don't care if we're down 20-1. It's not right, ever, and nothing excuses it. So I don't really have a feeling about whether it's because we were losing. It should never happen."
"You think about it, the obvious one is he threw some beer on him," Kenney said. "But let's say the beer was in his eyes and he got hit in the head, and then what's the next thing that gets thrown from the stands? It just can't happen, for safety reasons, and because, listen, it's not right. It's not the kind of sportsmanship our organization tries to put on the field, and 99.9 percent of our fans would agree, that's not the way to behave. We had one person who didn't follow the rules."
Cubs manager Lou Piniella apologized to Victorino after Wednesday's game.
"I hope [the guilty fan] understands you can't do stuff like that," Victorino said. "If it happens on the streets, I don't think he'd be walking too far with something like that happening in the streets. It's just not something that you do. The big picture is this guy should be held accountable."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. MLB.com reporter Todd Zolecki contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.