And An Expert Witness Batting Leadoff!

Historically, professional sports has not been viewed as a field rich in opportunities for litigation (Flood v. Kuhn notwithstanding).  Over the past few decades, however, there has been a substantial increase sports-related litigation, which in turn has provided ample opportunities for experts to assist both plaintiffs and defendants.  For example, the so-called “Deflategate” case didn’t just provide material for sports fans seeking validation for their hatred of Tom Brady and the Patriots; it also provided employment for several expert witnesses, including engineers, a physicist and an economist.  Far more striking is the NFL Players’ Concussion Injury Multi-District Litigation, which went through years of vigorous motion practice and discovery before it was finally settled.  In the course of the litigation, the parties used about 40 experts (really), including neurologists, psychiatrists, neuropsychologists, pathologists, radiologists and biomechanical engineers.  (The settlement has proved contentious and is the subject of ongoing litigation – see, e.g.,

The Forbes Magazine article linked here reviews a recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, allowing minor league baseball players’ lawsuit against MLB for higher wages to proceed as a class action.  This interesting case promises to provide future employment for several expert witnesses, as well as entertainment for lovers of minor league baseball and sports-related litigation.


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