Columnist Mike Downey, then of The Times, captured the moment:
"Fourth inning, tough situation. Onto the diamond, something runs. It is moving quickly, so it can't be a turtle. It is really hustling, so it can't be a Cub. It is really funny-looking, so it could be a sportswriter."
The verdict: a possum.
So critters have long been an issue at the old ballyard, the latest craze — the striped skunk, scientifically Mephitis mephitis. A skunk so nice they named it twice.
But is their recent emergence a threat to public health, or merely a stinky nuisance?
Skunks can carry rabies, "though the vast majority do not," said Roger Baldwin, a wildlife expert at UC Davis.
"They're just looking for little den sites to hole up in the daytime, then they come out to scavenge at night," Baldwin explained. "If there is a lull of natural foods in the adjacent areas, that might be why they're coming into the stadium looking for food.
"They would love a chunk of hot dog," he said.
The chances of a fan coming across a skunk are minimal, and if one does, the animals are relatively unaggressive and will shy away from contact, Baldwin said.
My advice: Panic. Then scream "Skunk!" Then shrug and order another beer.
According to Baldwin, a skunk will stomp its front feet before spraying, usually if cornered or otherwise threatened. The critters will spray only as a last resort because it takes a "high metabolic input on their part to manufacture the spray material."
When they do fire, Baldwin says, they will aim for the face and eyes.
Dodgers spokesman Steve Brener said the franchise has set traps outside the stadium, a tactic Baldwin endorsed.
"They're a difficult challenge in a stadium setting like that," he said. "Sounds like [the Dodgers] are doing what they should."
As for the overload of skunk stink, heavy in the stadium air Monday night, and garlic fries, heavy in the stadium air every night, "They're both sulfur compounds, so they smell relatively similar," Baldwin says.
Yeah, we noticed.