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This guy caught two homers last night in New York

Apr 19, 2013, 9:05 PM EDT

Didi Gregorius AP

The Yankees wrapped up a three-game set with the Diamondbacks last night. It was a 14-inning affair that eventually ended 6-2 in the D-Backs’ favor, but that wasn’t the most interesting thing about the game. Zack Hample, a baseball collector and author of several books including How to Snag Major League Baseballs, caught two home runs in the Yankee Stadium stands last night hit by Didi Gregorius and Francisco Cervelli.

As it was the first career homer for Gregorius, he wanted his ball back and Hample obliged as you can see in the photo. Watch Hample catch both homers along with a brief interview with FOX Sports Arizona.

  1. tfbuckfutter - Apr 19, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    I think I remember this guy from an ESPN segment or something from a loooong time ago.

    Even though what he’s doing is pretty damn dorky…..he’s definitely great at it. So….good for him. That is a really valuable….that is a really useful….that is a really good…..that is definitely a skill alright.

    • historiophiliac - Apr 19, 2013 at 11:59 PM

      But, can you connect him to Kevin Bacon?

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:19 AM

        I will skip the obvious “He caught Didi Gregorious’ first home run ball and Didi Gegorious is the name of Kevin Bacon’s band with his brother” joke.

        After perusing his wiki page, I will also avoid the Tonight Show link which is too easy, but I will go with this:

        Zack Hample was on To Tell the Truth hosted by John O’Hurley, who was on Seinfeld with Newman (Don’t know his real name) who was in Jurassic Park with Joseph Mazello who was in…..The River Wild.

        With Kevin Bacon. And also, I imagine a lot of people don’t realize….John C. Reilly. Who is awesome.

        I wish I could work The Woodsman into one of those games sometimes, because that was actually a pretty good movie (it’s hard to make someone kind of feel bad for a child molester) but there is just not a lot to work with.

        Sleepers and Mystic River really are the key to the game.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:25 AM

        Very good.

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:49 AM

        I asked my wife to throw one at me just for fun, and she went with David Spade….who is on Rules of Engagement with Puddy from Seinfeld.

        So it was nice to have that already in the chamber.

        Instead of being impressed by the ease in which I did it, however, she just nodded and then went back to sleep.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:59 AM

        That one was too easy. I could do that one. How about John Gielgud?

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 20, 2013 at 1:09 AM

        Full disclosure, I’m not familiar with that guy (I’m not good with anyone obscure from before the 90s, and anyone not quite notable from before the 80s and anyone at all from before the 60s-70s), so I had to bring up just his IMDB page….

        But I do recall Portrait of a Lady with Nicole Kidman (that pervy teen thing again cause she was naked in it and one of my biggest crushes) so we’ll go from there with an asterisk…..Kidman to Joaquin Phoenix in To Die For, to The Master with Philip Seymour Hoffman, to Magnolia (which we did before using, I think Tom Cruise but now I realize, interestingly enough…) with John….C…..Reilly.

        And actually, there is an easier one that I now see after typing that….Matt Dillon was in To Die For and also Wild Things.

        I don’t know why, but this has always been fun to me, even before it was a game….when I was a kid, and I couldn’t wind down for sleep, I would think of a wrestler and follow the thread as to why he could beat a different, far superior wrestler because of the people he beat who beat someone else who beat someone else….

      • historiophiliac - Apr 20, 2013 at 1:14 AM

        I feel like I’m enabling you now. lol

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 20, 2013 at 1:44 AM

        Not really.

        It’s like playing sudoku.

        It’s a way to keep the brain flexible.

        But….It is time to sleep off the vodka now because I do have to work in the mid-morning.

        Anytime you want to throw one at me, it’s fun for me. Most people won’t indulge me because they don’t want to hear my thoughts about White Water Summer (spoiler alert- It’s awesome!).

        Plus, HBT is nice because people don’t scream “KEEP IT ON TOPIC! WE WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT ZACK HAMPLE! I’M COMPLAINING TO THE MODERATORS BECAUSE STIR OF ECHOES WAS A RIPOFF OF THE SIXTH SENSE AND DEATH SENTENCE WAS A RIPOFF OF DEATH WARRANT AND ALSO THAT JODIE FOSTER ONE THAT NO ONE SAW!!!”

        …..Goddammit vodka.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 20, 2013 at 11:27 AM

        BTW, my sister’s patient is besties with Shelley Morrison, who played Karen’s maid on Will & Grace. Of course, Kevin Bacon appeared on Will & Grace too. Viola!

  2. hojo20 - Apr 19, 2013 at 9:41 PM

    I have the McKayla Maroney “not impressed” face.

    • nbjays - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:18 AM

      You are not alone… Stephen Strasberg and Danny Espinosa aren’t impressed, either.

    • brandondmorrow - Apr 20, 2013 at 9:26 AM

      Now I just want that guy to connect Kevin bacon to McKayla Maroney lol

  3. dawgpoundmember - Apr 19, 2013 at 9:49 PM

    I liked the broadcasters comment at the end, “I’d like to see his scouting reports”

  4. mybrunoblog - Apr 19, 2013 at 10:01 PM

    I was at the game. I didn’t catch crap but I did have a sweet chicken cheese steak sandwich and my first Budweiser since about 1987.

    • jimeejohnson - Apr 20, 2013 at 12:34 PM

      You haven’t missed much when it comes to the Budweiser, King of crappy beers!

  5. djpostl - Apr 19, 2013 at 10:24 PM

    Of course “Hample obliged”. As soon as he caught it the cameras had him looking right into D’backs dugout doing the universal “pay me” sign of rubbing his thumb across his fingers.

  6. asimonetti88 - Apr 19, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    It’s still so weird to me to see interleague games so often. Not that there’s anything wrong with it, it is just going to take some getting used to.

  7. mentalotherhalf - Apr 20, 2013 at 4:33 AM

    Hample and I attended the same college over pretty much the same years. He was already doing his ball-collecting-thing (ahem) then; if I remember correctly, he got started well before that. He also started a Scrabble club at that school, which struck me as pretty cool until I realized that the whole club spent most of their meetings memorizing all of the two-letter words in the Official Scrabble Dictionary so they could inflate their scores as much as possible. So, basically: Zack seems to like to be terrific at skills which pretty much nobody else seems to really want. And he takes them all a little more seriously than you’d hope he might (For pretty much my whole life, I’ve practiced Japanese martial arts derived from that nation’s feudal-era warfare, so I guess I relate to Zack on that level. Sigh.) He’ll probably eventually get some kind of world record for kind-of-embarrassing records. He’ll probably invent that record, first, though. Regardless: actually a nice guy, and knows his baseball pretty damn well. At least he did a dozen years ago.

    Now that I’ve written all that, I’ve got a deja-thingy. I think maybe I wrote all of this in an HBT comment thread a year or two ago when Zack got himself on television for doing some other ball-snagging trick. I’m gonna stop writing, sober up, and/or fall asleep now.

  8. papacrick - Apr 20, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    Thanks for sharing. That scrabble story pretty much explains this guy’s behavior. Maybe he will move on collecting major league chewed sunflower seeds and combine all the DNA to from a super human catcher of foul/hr balls

  9. louhudson23 - Apr 20, 2013 at 8:45 AM

    So what is his B.A.W.P.(Balls Above Wandering Pedestrian) .Utilising of course the Proximity factor which calculates and accounts for neighborhood residents wandering versus true passersby………I find B.A.W.P. calculated without the “Proximity” factor to be a non representative number and is used only by those who don’t really give a shit what the numbers are,just as long a as a number is produced and dissected and then considered to be the be all,know all number by which a ball chaser is regarded……….

  10. wihalofan - Apr 20, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    He caught Mike trout’s first MLB home run, and gave it to him after the game.

  11. turdfurgerson68 - Apr 20, 2013 at 9:24 AM

    Nice story; more importantly, another Yankee loss.

  12. cruuuzcontrol - Apr 20, 2013 at 4:03 PM

    Fact: Zack Hample is the world’s biggest loser

  13. greymares - Apr 20, 2013 at 4:11 PM

    he uses a glove, doesn’t count.

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