Was sitting on the desk of MLB Tonight a few weeks ago when Jose Altuve strolled up to the plate with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th inning of a tie game in Game 6 of the ALCS…
Aroldis Chapman, the Yankees 6’5” 100mph flame throwing closer was on the mound and breathing fire out of each nostril…
Altuve, who stands at 5’6”, is the inspiration for every kid in the world who has been told he or she is “too small” to play. Despite his diminutive size, he has developed into one of the best players in Major League Baseball.
So there they were… A modern day David and Goliath about to go to battle with the American League Championship on the line.
Chapman fired the first pitch at 100mph high and outside of the strike zone… Ball 1.
Chapman’s next pitch was again north of 100 mph, but also north of the strike zone… Ball 2.
With 2 balls and 0 strikes, Chapman dropped in a slider for a strike to bring the count to 2-1.
Simultaneously, host Greg Amsinger, analyst Carlos Peña and our coordinating producer Rich Chinchamino all said Chapman needs to be “VERY CAREFUL” with his next pitch…
The slider he just threw stayed up in the zone and it was almost as if you could see Altuve’s eyes light up as if to say: “Throw it again… PLEASE.”
The next pitch seemed like it came out of Chapman’s hand in slow motion… It was another slider and Altuve CRUSHED the ball off the brick facade in left centerfield and sent the Astros to the 2019 World Series…
As he rounded the bases, the stadium erupted, streamers fell from the top deck and the bull & fireworks display from the old Astrodome days engulfed the score board.
My immediate thought was that this is one of those scenes out of a Disney movie that seems too good to be true (at least if you are an Astros fan). 💥
Jose Altuve (everyman’s hero) defeats the evil empire to save the world and we all live happily ever after…
As Altuve approached home plate, he gestured to his teammates for them NOT to rip off his jersey as they had done earlier in the season… In the post game interview with Ken Rosenthal immediately afterwards, Ken asked Altuve why he made such a gesture.
This was Jose’s response…
“I am a shy guy… They did it earlier this year and my wife got mad.”
Greg Amsinger then tied a bow on it as only Amsinger could do:
“Well folks, that right there is the most adorable professional athlete of all time!!!”
Although Mary Lou Retton, Sasha Cohen and Muggsy Bogues might have something to say about it, I think Greg’s got a pretty good point. 🤗