The New York media may have thought they had a story when Sonny Kowalczyk latched onto the 500th home run ball hit by Alex Rodriguez. Now they’ve got bigger one.
Update 8/8: College kid Matt Murphy spoke with the Daily News about "winning the lottery".
Matt Murphy was on his way to Australia when he stopped off in San Francisco and bought a ticket for Tuesday night’s Padres/Giants game. The New Yorker was wearing a Jose Reyes Mets jersey when he grabbed a seat in the right centerfield stands at AT&T Park, hoping that Barry Bonds might find him with home run #756.
The home run ball that would create a new all-time record-holder sailed toward his section, then took a fortuitous bounce in Murphy’s direction. A mad scramble ensued but Murphy somehow emerged from the pile of money-grabbers with a ball that could finance a trip to Australia…and just about anything else he had his eyes on.
It was no secret the ball would likely fetch at least several hundred thousand dollars for the person who could produce it–and live. Six people were injured, but luckily no one killed in the ugly melee for the ball, which was described by eyewitnesses in the same seating section, some of which admitted to getting physical in an effort to become the owner.
As San Francisco police officers pushed him toward the safety of an office, watch the video showing the scene was nothing short of chaotic.
Update 8/8: Murphy spoke to the New York Daily News on Wednesday, sayiing he was ‘scraped up’ but OK. He plans to sell the ball, splitting the proceeds with a friend who came to the game with him and helped protect him in the melee.
Bonds isn’t worried about getting it back. "I just hope he wasn’t hurt," Bonds said. "I don’t want the ball. I never, ever believed that a home run ball belongs to a player. He caught it, it’s his."
San Diego fans are little more laid back. Adam Hughes, the San Diego area plumber, had a much easier time snaring #755 on Saturday.