Last night's Braves and Brewers game had a startling hiccup, as fans and players alike were upset during as a young fan was hit in the face with a foul ball off the bat of Carlos Gomez. I, and many others, watched in horror as Gomez came close to tears, while Julio Teheran crouched on the mound in apparent shock. Chip, Joe and Tom made sure to keep updating viewers to the situation, and it was confirmed the fan had been taken to the hospital late last night.
While the family of the kid is trying to keep their name out of the media for obvious reasons, that didn't stop members of both the Braves and Brewers from visiting him in hopes of making a small difference. Gomez, who was clearly seen praying before he took his next pitch, visited him in the hospital this morning.
Just went to see the young fan that was hit by my foul ball last night. He was in great spirits and I had a chance to sign the ball.— Carlos Gomez (@C_Gomez27) May 21, 2014
You don't like to see anyone get hurt, especially a child. Fans, please be alert and bring your glove!— Carlos Gomez (@C_Gomez27) May 21, 2014
Carlos Gomez (on visiting fan): "I'm a father. It's a scary moment last night. Had the opportunity to go to the hospital and I feel better"— Kevin McAlpin (@KevinMcAlpin) May 21, 2014
Braves fans have especially had it out for Gomez after his infamous spat with Brian McCann last year, booing him at every occasion, but I've seen all over twitter today how people are rethinking that. Maybe he's not the jerk most thought he was?
Along the same vein, Gerald Laird and Chris Johnson took memorabilia to the fan last night, although he missed their visit.
Chris Johnson and Gerald Laird took signed balls, bats and gloves last night when they visited the young boy struck by Gomez's foul ball— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) May 21, 2014
Johnson and Laird were not able to communicate with the boy when they went to the hospital around 11:30 last night.— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) May 21, 2014
But the boy's family has since told Johnson and Laird how appreciative he was when he woke up this morning and saw the items— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) May 21, 2014
Teheran got in on the action, too. I loved hearing him say he'd send the game ball to his mother during Braves Live, but he's now changed his mind to give it to the fan. I'm sure his mom will understand the sweet gesture.
It's sad that it sometimes takes a tragic situation to think about our favorite (or unfavorite) players as humans, but it's a powerful reminder of how sports can bring us together. Well done by both organizations.