Video: Tossing Softballs from Terminal Tower is a Poor Publicity Stunt

by

1 comment

Picture_1800.png

Man, there's something about cuing up old TV footage on a Monday morning that just nudges everything into historical perspective. The minimalist décor, weird clothing, unscripted awkwardness – it all makes for a glorious Delorean ride that either leaves you appreciative of our ADD-what-now news coverage today or nostalgic for the times when a walking corpse like Ted Stepien could claim a chunk of airtime with inexplicable arm candy bizarrely in tow.

Newsnet5 has unearthed this piece of gold from their achieves featuring the former Cavs owner, a man who holds down select real estate on local hate lists for pissing all over the team in his tenure and famously cutting loose Joe Tait.

But in this 1980 broadcast, Stepien came under fire for a stranger insult to the public weal.

To celebrate the Terminal Tower's 50th birthday, Stepien was asked to toss softballs from the top floor; waiting below were members of Stepien's professional softball team, the Competitors, who were supposed to catch the high altitude tosses. This was a re-do of a stunt pulled by the Indians in the 30s. But unlike that piece of street theater, when Stepien started winging softballs from the roof, the balls sailed into the crowd, injuring two people.

In the latter half of the clip, Stepien tries to talk out went wrong – but he really sinks his whole explanation by stationing a pretty girl at his flank who we only learn in the last seconds is a Cavs' ticket seller but never are clued into why she's there in the first place.

And what the hell is a professional softball team?

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.