CINCINNATI (AP) — What’s more unusual than a team hitting back-to-back homers? How about one fan catching both of them.
That’s what Caleb Lloyd did on Monday night at Great American Ball Park.
The 20-year-old junior from Thomas More College was in left field when Reds pitcher Mike Leake hit his first career homer in the fourth inning. The ball went directly to Lloyd, who had never caught a ball at a game.
“It hit my hand,” he said. “I didn’t expect to actually catch it. I never actually caught a home run ball. It hurt really bad.”
Three pitches later, shortstop Zack Cozart hit another one to the same area. The ball bounced right to Lloyd, who had one free hand.
“The second one bounced behind me and bounced right into my lap,” he said. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s just crazy!’ I couldn’t believe my eyes. Right now, I still can’t believe it’s happening.”
He gave the second home run ball to the friend who had convinced him to go to the game and provided the tickets. Knowing it was Leake’s first career homer, Lloyd saved that ball and offered it to the pitcher for an autograph after the game.
“I just wanted to meet him,” Lloyd said, standing outside the clubhouse.
The Reds beat the Atlanta Braves 4-1.