BOSTON, Mass. — When the Cusimano family went to Fenway Park to take in a Yankees/Red Sox game this summer, they surely didn’t expect to take home one, let alone two, game balls.
Carey and her husband Andrew, along with their daughter Emma, a Park City High School student and volleyball player, surprised their son Charlie, a Treasure Mountain Jr. High School student and Miners Baseball Team member, with tickets to the game for his 15th birthday. The four of them were visiting extended family in Cape Cod.
The family was seated in row 20, between home and first. During the second inning, Yankee Aron Hicks hit one over their son Charlie’s head. All the spectators around were going for the catch but Charlie reached up his arm, stood on his tippy-toes and just straight palmed the ball with his right hand; no bobble, no wiggle. The crowd cheered his breathtaking grab.
An usher, who happened to be wearing a World Series ring, was flabbergasted and told Charlie, “Son, never in all my years have I seen a catch like that!” A man, smiling and nodding, seated behind Charlie asked him, “Do you play baseball?” Charlie answered in the affirmative, to which the man said, “What position?” “Centerfield,” Charlie said. “Obviously,” was the reply. Others pointed, took pictures and high-fived the family.
Not twenty minutes later, a foul ball is hit by Yankee Aaron Judge. It bounces off the level above them and is caught clean by the father, Andrew. The crowd goes wild, in shock and disbelief how, boom, son catches one and, boom, Dad catches another. No one had ever seen anything like it, with one fan around them exclaiming, “You guys need to go buy some lottery tickets.”
Charlie told TownLift, “It was awesome, the best game I’ve ever been to in my life, I’ll never forget it.”
Lifelong Sox fan, Andrew, had a slightly different point to make on the experience when he told TownLift, “With my wife and my daughter there, and I’ve been to a lot of baseball games, by far this was the most fantastic one I’ve ever been to.” He added, “Not only because my son and I caught two balls, but because the Yankees lost.”
What are the odds? The family is still wondering in amazement, with 37,000 people in that stadium and to have this happen has been mindblowing-ly fun for them.
Red Sox won in 10 innings with a walk-off to centerfield, 6 to 5.
Upon returning to work as the National Ability Center’s (NAC) Vice President of Development, Carey, or Mom, told the story to her colleague, and her three baseball-athlete sons. Of the Bognaski brothers, who attend Ecker Hill Middle School and Parleys Park Elementary School respectively, Brayden got immediately emotional. After the kids left, a few minutes later, Bognaski walked back into the NAC office and said to Carey, “Can I please buy one of those balls from you?” Carey was touched by his passion for the game and appreciation of the moment. Right then, the answer was an understandable, “Uuummm, weeelll?!”
A week later, following some serious family talks, the Cusimanos were happy to gift Andrew’s caught ball to the fellow fan.