Swine Flu at Citi Field?

Woman falls ill after going to a Mets game

The Mets have caused their fans plenty of agita already this season, but they may have actually contributed to making one of them seriously ill.

A woman in upstate Sullivan County has the swine flu and health officials believe that a visit to Citi Field last week may be where she contracted the illness. Sullivan County manager David Fanslau told Newsday that it was the only trip she made outside the county, which didn't have any cases of the H1N1 virus before she became ill.

"Obviously, we don't know for a fact, but it's the first case we have in Sullivan County and we talked to her and the only travel she made was to New York City for the Mets game," Fanslau said. 

The woman is recovering at home and expects to return to week before the end of the week.

The Mets say that no one from the New York City health department has contacted them about any link to the virus. It would be impossible, of course, for the Mets to make sure that every one of the fans coming through the gates was disease-free, but it does raise the question of how the city will respond if the flu continues to spread throughout the city. Soccer games in Mexico were played in empty stadiums to halt the spread of flu.

There's also the chance that the Mets could find a way to work a sponsorship opportunity into the situation. Face masks could be stamped with a logo and handed out to every fan passing through the turnstiles, or perhaps they could dress the team in hazmat suits so they could sell replicas in their team store. Who knows, the full suit might even improve Daniel Murphy's outfield defense.

Josh Alper is a writer living in New York City and is a contributor to FanHouse.com and ProFootballTalk.com in addition to his duties for NBCNewYork.com.

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