Another prayer answered: Young fan meets Stott

June 10th, 2022

PHILADELPHIA -- Caden Marge’s 8-year-old life has been crazy since an NBC Sports Philadelphia camera caught him praying before Bryson Stott’s walk-off home run against the Angels on Sunday afternoon at Citizens Bank Park.

Marge’s euphoric reaction after Stott homered was equally priceless.

Marge and Stott met before Friday’s series opener against the D-backs at Citizens Bank Park, completing an unforgettable week. Marge’s pre- and post-homer reactions went viral almost immediately after Stott’s homer landed in the right-field seats. It happened only an inning after Bryce Harper hit a game-tying grand slam, which landed just a few rows in front of Marge in the second deck in right field.

Stott presented Marge with a Phillies jersey with Marge's last name on the back and an autographed bat with a message:

“To Caden: Thanks for the Help! Go Phils! Bryson Stott.”

What was Marge's favorite part of the week?

“Getting this,” Marge said.

So is Stott his favorite player?

“Bryson and Bryce Harper,” Marge said.

Stott talked this week in Milwaukee about the viral moment becoming permanently linked to his first career walk-off homer.

“He looked pretty nervous,” Stott said, smiling. “I’m sure he probably thought I was going to get out, but then he started jumping around. I’m sure he’ll remember that forever. I still remember going to games and seeing home runs. I was telling Bobby [Dickerson], the last time I went to Dodger Stadium, I got a video of [Manny] Machado hitting a homer. You remember stuff like that.”

Marge was on the field prior to the game Friday with his father, Joe, mother, Katie, 6-year-old sister, Madison, and a few friends.

The Marges are from West Chester, Pa.

“I don’t think he realizes how far it’s gone,” Joe Marge said. “It’s gone everywhere. But he really loves every Philly sport. He lives and dies with everything. They just caught him being him in that moment. It wasn’t anything out of the ordinary.”

Joe said he realized his son was blowing up on social media before they got home from the game. He was getting texts from people saying Caden was everywhere.

He can thank NBC Sports Philadelphia camera operator Greg Farnese for that. Farnese has been in the business for 28 years, starting at PRISM. His camera is stationed in left-center field and he was just looking for a fan who captured the significance of the moment.

“We’re doing games for the people at home watching,” Farnese said. “There’s somebody at home on the edge of their sofa praying. But we want to show them here at the ballpark. So every once in a while, depending on a certain situation, I’ll go to the crowd and shoot that to show the emotion of what’s happening. And every once in a while, we find something that’s just priceless.

“It’s like, this is a tense moment, let me see if I can find somebody. Sometimes I’ll find a guy biting his nails or a couple where one is wearing an opposing jersey and they’re bickering at each other. Sometimes you find a kid that’s praying. When I see that, I don’t leave it, because you never know, maybe this guy will hit a home run and his prayers will be answered. Who knows? In that instance, it turns out his prayers were answered. It makes for great television.”

And a week one 8-year-old will never forget.