Legendary hockey coach, Herb Brooks, once said "great moments are born from great opportunities." In baseball, those great moments can range from a walk off home run, a perfect game, a no-hitter, or even a walk-off walk that scores a run. As fans, we tend to cheer for the moments that see a recent call up or our favorite player run the bases until they’re greeted by their teammates and coaches, and a whole lot of Gatorade and water showers. These are the moments that we’d like to think baseball players live for, to an extent.
That moment, for me, brought itself to fruition, when the second game of a Manfred seven-inning doubleheader, was starting to draw itself to an end. The ever-growing fear of "are the Twins really going to sweep the double-header?!" was rearing its ugly head. The score in the first inning was 1-0 after Luis Arraez got a single off of Reynaldo Lopez, which led to Josh Donaldson getting a sacrifice fly to bring Arraez home. At the bottom of the first, Jose Abreu tied the game with a home run after Leury Garcia and Yoan Moncada struck out swinging. The inning ended after Brian Goodwin lined out, and to make matters all the more concerning, Mitch Garver scored a home run, making it 2-1, Twins. It was 3-1 Twins, as Garver struck again, and at the bottom of the sixth, Moncada got a home run, making it 3-2. As the seventh inning drew close, the flair for dramatics and the holding out for a hero from the White Sox, two men were on for the White Sox, Goodwin with a single, and Vaughn after being hit by a pitch. Gavin Sheets, the rookie extraordinaire, was up to bat, and as soon as you could predict the magic of it all, his home run ended up being a no doubter. The fans went home happy and everyone was overjoyed for the Sox and for Sheets. Although I was working in the stadium, the joyous feelings never ceased and we were all celebrating the victory against Josh Donaldson and the Twins.
On a personal note, this game stuck out to me, due to my cousin, Grace who told all of us that she loved Gavin Sheets and he was her new favorite player. Unfortunately, she passed away in mid August due to a battle with an illness, but her love for Gavin encouraged me to root for his journey into the big leagues and the remainder of his baseball career. She was so incredibly brave and always encouraged me to go after my dreams and goals in life, as well as sticking with the Sox. Gavin Sheets may be a rookie, but his impact will be widespread for years to come.