Chicago Cubs player sobs uncontrollably after hitting 4-year-old with foul ball
Many kids bring their gloves to major league baseball games, hoping they'll be lucky enough to catch a foul ball - or better yet, a home run ball. However, one thing nobody wants is to catch is a line drive to the face.
Baseballs weigh 5.125 ounces, and a 90-mph fastball can leave the bat at 110 mph, therefore... I don't know, because I'm not good at math, but I bet it hurts like a mother!
During Wednesday's game against the Houston Astros, Chicago Cubs center fielder Albert Almora Jr. socked a foul ball into the bleachers behind third base.
The wayward line drive struck a four-year-old girl in the crowd, who started crying, bringing Minute Maid Stadium to stunned silence. As the father rushed his daughter out of the stands, Almora Jr. fell to his knees and sobbed over the unfortunate accident.
"He rips a line drive down the third-base line and it comes in and it looks like it hits someone hard," spectator David LeVasseur recalled to The Houston Chronicle. "It bounces, comes down and hits the guy to my left off (a) ricochet and the next thing you know it's at my feet. I pick it up and all we heard was screaming. We saw this dad pick up a child and run up the stairs."
"I came upstairs and see the first-aid guys up there and the dad is holding the girl," LeVasseur continued. "She [was] alert, she’s conscious, she’s fine. I was just going to give somebody in the family the ball. They kind of, naturally, shook it off. I asked the first aid guy if she was okay and he said he didn’t know." LeVasseur added that there were no traces of blood on the ball or the seat.
Gameplay briefly halted after the incident, as many in the stadium appeared shaken. During the break, Cubs right fielder Jason Heyward and Cubs manager Joe Madden followed the father to console him.
Almora Jr. eventually composed himself enough to return to bat, and struck out. Then the 25-year-old walked off the field, hoping to get an update on the young fan's condition.
Security guards reportedly told Almora Jr. that the girl was hurt, but conscious, prompting him to sob with relief. One security guard then gave him hug, and his teammates rallied around him to provide emotional support.
Based on witness counts, the stricken child's outlook seems positive, but officials have not publicly released an update. A statement from the Astros confirmed the girl was taken to the hospital, but did not disclose further details.
"As soon as I hit [the ball] the first person I locked eyes on was her," Almora Jr. told NBC Chicago after the game. "I'm speechless, at a loss for words. Being a father of two boys. God willing, I'll be able to have a relationship with this little girl for the rest of my life, but just prayers right now."
On Twitter, fans applauded Almora Jr .and other players for their big hearts. We hope the girl makes a full recovery soon.