Ex-judge agrees to mediate homer fuss

The Associated Press
Wednesday October 09, 2002

SAN FRANCISCO — A retired judge agreed Tuesday to mediate the dispute between the two men, each of whom claims to be the rightful owner of Barry Bonds’ record-setting 73rd home run ball. 

Lawyers for Alex Popov, the man who says he caught the ball, and Patrick Hayashi, the scrambling Giants fan who ended up with it, said retired Judge Coleman Fannin would oversee a settlement conference Wednesday. 

So far, little has been settled, and the ball remains in a safety deposit box pursuant to a court order. 

Hayashi said Monday the ball is his, and he’d like to sell it. Popov maintains he is the rightful owner and said he wants to keep it. 

Martin Triano, Popov’s lawyer, said if the issue is not resolved with Fannin’s aid Wednesday, they’ll head back to San Francisco Superior Court Thursday to explain why to Judge Ronald Quidachay. 

The case is Popov v. Hayashi, 400545.