HOUSTON – If you were among the millions who watched Game 6 of the World Series at home, it was the last thing you saw of Atlanta Braves slugger Jorge Solers home run ball as it disappeared across the Minute Maid Park railroad into the night.
That was also what Manuel Ramos saw while watching the fight from the balcony of his brother Richard’s apartment. But he had also seen it a few seconds earlier. That apartment happens to be across the street from Minute Maid Park. It also happens to have a view of the stadium when the roof is open – as it was on Tuesday, for one of the only times all season.
And then after Manuel and his brother saw the ball leave the yard, they looked down. And it was then that they noticed that it was sitting on the street outside the brick building known as the 500 Crawford.
Soler’s three-run shot raised an estimated 446 feet from the home plate, landed on an awning outside the park, rolled to the right and fell to the ground inside a fence that closed the stadium from the neighborhood. That’s how it ended with a view of the balcony. “It was just lying on the sidewalk there,” Richard told ESPN a few laps later.
So within minutes, Richard’s wife, Shawnda, and Manuel were walking down the street. Manuel guessed that it took them about eight minutes to get there – and then they discovered that the fenced area was inaccessible from where they were.
“I was talking to the security guard like, ‘Please, just escort me over there,'” Shawnda said.
That conversation turned out to be the moment Manuel needed. When the security guards spoke to her, he struck. Literally. “I suppose I distracted them,” Shawnda said. “I did not even do it on purpose. I did not even know he was coming down [with me]. “
Manuel jumped over the fence, grabbed the ball, hid it half in his shirt and ran back to their viewing party. It was then, they said, that security began to look for it – but without success.
As lifelong Astros fans, the group upstairs was disappointed with the home run, but excited about owning a game-winning home run ball.
“This is the first I’ve seen leave the park,” Richard said. “The roof is almost never open. We will burn it if the Braves win.”
The Braves won, of course, but it is unlikely that Richard will follow up, without taking into account the potential value of his souvenir.
“What about $ 1 million?” said Manuel only half jokingly. “I’m not impulsive. I want to stick to it.”
The brothers said the only souvenirs they own are a few seats from the old Astrodome – and it’s not like this ball has any sentimentality attached to it, because the home run drove the Braves to an easy victory and a World Series title. over Astros.
So if the Suns want baseball, then they listen.
“No one has contacted me yet,” Manuel said.