'Every time I meet him, it's a dream come true,' says 15-year-old
ST. LOUIS -- Aside from the dozens of texts, hundreds of tweets and the two news crews that showed up at her house Monday, it was just another school day for 15-year-old Jordan Hynum of Fort Atkinson, Wis.
Hynum is the young lady who burst into tears at the sight of Brewers center fielder Carlos Gomez on Sunday afternoon at Miller Park. The unscripted tug of the heartstrings went viral after a Fox Sports Wisconsin camera caught the moment, and by Monday afternoon, the clip was everywhere.
"It's been crazy," Hynum said. "I've been known as the girl who cried on TV."
But there's more to the story.
"The whole story is actually really cool," said Hynum's dad, Erin Hynum.
The story began last season, when Jordan's mom, Denise, decided to do something special for each of her children. Since Jordan loves baseball, particularly the Brewers, and most of all Gomez, all the way back to his days with the Minnesota Twins, mom bought tickets to an entire Brewers-Cubs series at Wrigley Field.
"At one of the games, they were standing near the Brewers' dugout, and my wife managed to get the attention of Carlos Gomez," Erin Hynum said. "He came over and was just super kind. He signed a bat and a hat and I don't know what else. After another game, he came and found her again and threw a ball to her in the outfield. He was just awesome."
Gomez personalized the bat, "To Jordan Hynum, my biggest fan!" She stood to the side and wiped away tears of joy.
They met again at Miller Park last September, and yes, Jordan cried again.
What is it about the mere presence of this player that makes her cry?
"I don't know," Jordan said. "I really like him. Every time I meet him, it's a dream come true. He's my idol. Every time I meet him, I feel so grateful, and it always makes me cry."
On Sunday, the whole Hynum family attended Gomez bobblehead day at Miller Park. Per tradition, Jordan sent Gomez a direct message on Twitter, telling him what color jersey she would wear.
The FS Wisconsin video takes the story from there. Gomez is signing autographs before the game when he spots Jordan, bobblehead doll in hand, and she gingerly waves hello. Gomez leans in for a hug. She loses it, which leads to another hug.
"She just started crying," Gomez said with a smile on Monday afternoon. "It was like she couldn't breathe. I said, 'Hey, take it easy, I'm here.'"
"It was just the perfect combination of cuteness," Erin Hynum said.
The moment aired in the sixth inning of what would become a 4-0 Brewers loss to the Cubs, and Jordan's cellphone started buzzing immediately with text messages. By Monday, she was a national celebrity thanks to social media.
It's a different side of Gomez than has permeated the airwaves over the past eight days. He is currently appealing a three-game suspension for his role in a benches-clearing incident in Pittsburgh on April 20, which began when Pirates pitcher Gerrit Cole and Gomez exchanged words after Gomez watched a triple sail out to center field.
The Hynums are happy that sports fans around the country are seeing a softer side of the Brewers' center fielder.
"I told Jordan, 'In a funny way, you helped your idol,'" Erin Hynum said.
"It's very exciting to me, and I like that the story has gotten out, and Gomez gets [recognized] for the good in his reputation," Jordan Hynum said. "It's just funny to see my name and face everywhere. It's weird."
Now that she's famous, will their next meeting at Miller Park be different?
"Honestly, I think I will cry again," she said. "It just gets me."