You had one job: Batboy forgets duties to admire dad's homer

March 2nd, 2024

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Watching your dad hit a home run in a Major League Baseball game would seemingly be a pretty remarkable experience for any kid -- and doing so from the top step of the dugout would simply be mesmerizing.

But when you're also serving as the team's batboy for the day, you can't let the once-in-a-lifetime moment get in the way of doing your job.

That was the tough lesson Phillies outfielder taught his son, Liam, on Saturday afternoon in the Phillies' 3-2 win over the Twins at BayCare Ballpark. With Liam serving as the club's batboy for a second straight day, Castellanos hit a towering home run off Twins right-hander Bailey Ober in the second inning.

Liam, who has captured the hearts of baseball fans in the past with his exuberant celebrations, watched in awe from the top step as his dad rounded the bases -- all while the bat laid untouched exactly where it was dropped. As Nick approached home plate, he began gesturing toward Liam, then remained standing on the plate and pointing at the bat until Liam finally trotted out to retrieve it with a huge smile on his face.

“As a dad, I've got to hold him accountable,” Castellanos said with a smile.

So what did he say to Liam?

“I don't think I needed to say anything,” Castellanos said. “As soon as I went like this [gestures with arm], I think he knew what I was referring to.”

It was just the latest wholesome moment for the father-son duo, who have been enjoying Spring Training together in Clearwater.

When Liam’s schedule permits, he has been arriving at the Phillies' clubhouse each morning with his dad and following him just about everywhere. The two go through drills together and can often be found playing a new game on the backfields called "Paco Ball" -- named after Phillies first-base coach Paco Figueroa -- with the likes of Alec Bohm and Kyle Schwarber, among others.

“This isn't just a job for me, but it's also my dream,” Castellanos said. “So to be able to spend days like this here, with Liam and him being able to have these memories and make these relationships … it's awesome.”

But the latest lesson for Liam may just be the best one yet: It's OK to have fun, but don't let it get in the way of your job.

"It's cute to see, man,” Castellanos said. “He's taken it seriously and he’s learning what his jobs are with the other kids. It's cool. Just responsibility and he has a job to do, and it's fun watching him do it."