In a rainy Saturday afternoon, Barton was set to lead off the bottom of the 3rd inning for the home team Playaz. Before batting, there was some discussion about postponing the game after 2.5 innings due to the pouring rain. However, the majority favored playing 5 innings to make the game official. Barton, the league leader in doubles (12) led off the inning with a booming rocket to the left-center gap. Due to slick base paths, Barton wasn’t able to run at full speed. Rookie left fielder Nick Larson lasered a strong throw to second base. Barton awkwardly slid left foot first into the bag and narrowly beat out the throw, however, his left ankle got caught on the side of second base. With no where for his weight to go as his foot was stuck on the bag, all Barton’s momentum was shifted to his ankle. Barton suffered a serious injury and was escorted off the field, suspending the rain soaked game.
Bob Zerull and Josh Paul assisted Barton to the Trinity Hospital ER. After x-rays were taken, the Doctor told Barton he had broken his ankle in three different places. Emergency surgery was completed and Barton’s fate was determined by the doctor that he would have to take 6 to 8 weeks of recovery before putting weight back on his ankle. Barton was placed on the 60-day disabled list retroactive to Saturday, June 12. This leaves Barton with a questionable return by late August, when Veto League will host another night game at Modern Woodman Park.
Barton said he has had problems with his left ankle in the past, spraining it multiple times, however, this is the worst that’s ever happened to it. “It felt like my foot dislocated from my leg. The pain was terrible,” said Barton.
Barton is in the top 10 all-time Veto League ranks for games played, hits, doubles, triples, homers, runs scored, and RBI. This season he was leading the league in doubles, triples, homers, and batting average (.679). His batting average was on pace to break the single season record, set by Andy Moeller in 2006 at .649. Barton captained the Gremlins at the 2009 Modern Woodman Park Veto League All-Star Game. Barton is survived by wife, Melissa, and 4-month old son, Jacob.