Let's recall the best fan catch of the 2017 MLB season
You probably already remember the play: It was Game 5 of the World Series. Ninth inning, Minute Maid Park. Yasiel Puig one-handed a fly ball that landed in the Crawford Boxes in left field for a two-run homer to pull Los Angeles to within a run at 12-11. An Astros fan caught the ball, but then this happened:
Fan catches and their aftermaths are often emotional eperiences -- but few carry the weight of a tense, back-and-forth World Series game. So it makes sense, then, that this truly unbelievable sequence came about during a game filled with truly unbelievable sequences.
That particular fan catch moment was voted the winner in the Esurance MLB Awards after an industry-wide balloting process that includes five groups, each of which accounts for 20 percent of the overall vote: Media, front-office personnel, retired MLB players, fans at MLB.com and Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) members.
This isn't to say that the other fan catch moments in the running didn't merit strong consideration. They're all pretty special:
A surprise from Cody Bellinger
Back on May 19, the Dodgers beat the Marlins, 7-2, and in the eighth inning Cody Bellinger swatted an opposite-field homer that landed in the cap of a Dodgers fan ... but she had no idea it happened at first:
That's a fun surprise!
Phillies fan's one-handed, diving play
A few days later on May 22, this Phillies fan put it all on the line in the name of a souvenir:
Into the river!
Some fans choose to throw homers hit by the opposition back onto the field. But this Pirates fan had more dramatic plans after Jedd Gyorko of the Cardinals hit him one on July 14: He just chucked it into the river.
Fan makes a barehanded grab, avoids a BBQ disaster, gets a kiss
Look up the definition of "smooth" in the dictionary and you'll get a definition of the word "smooth" -- but this Sept. 7 display by a Padres fan who barehanded a foul, didn't spill his messy BBQ dinner and received a kiss for his efforts -- also applies.
Mariners fan's lucky leap
On July 31, eventual AL Rookie of the Year Aaron Judge clubbed his 31st homer of the season. The ball nearly made it entirely out of Safeco Field, only coming to a landing a few rows from the very top of the seats in left field ... and into the outstretched, leaping hands of one very excited M's fan:
Some very fine examples of fans doing it right this season.
Want to end up on this type of list next year? Better bring your A-game, baseball fans ... the bar's been set pretty high.