Ryan Howard of the Philadelphia Phillies is congratulated by third base coach Ryne Sandberg after hitting a home run against the Miami Marlins during the second inning in a MLB baseball game on May 3, 2013 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (AFP)
It wasn’t as mythical as Babe Ruth calling his shot during Game 3 of the 1932 World Series, but Philadelphia Phillies slugger Ryan Howard became a living legend Friday night – at least in one blind boy’s mind.
During Teacher Appreciation night in Philly, A.J., a seven-year-old boy suffering from Leber congenital amaurosis, nominated his Braille teacher to receive recognition prior to Friday night’s game against the visiting Miami Marlins.
Before the game, A.J. and his teacher were introduced to Howard on the field, where the young Phillies fan exchanged high-fives with the two-time National League home run champ.
In addition to presenting Howard with a bracelet, which Howard donned during the game, A.J. had one more favour to ask.
“I told him, I want you to hit a home run tonight,” A.J. told MLB.com. “Just for this.”
In his first at bat, Howard did just that, belting a frozen rope over the right field fence to send A.J. home with a smile that likely still hasn’t left his face.
“I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s probable for me,’” A.J. said.