Catching foul balls has become an art. Whether you do it with a baby in your arms or a plate of nachos in your hand, every foul ball caught by a fan is unique and worthy of examination.
But is it still art if it happens three times in a single game? In that case, it’s just luck. Insane, ridiculous, amazing luck. (And a little talent, too.) Oakland Athletics fan Ryan Noone was that lucky fan on Sunday afternoon, when he caught three foul balls during the A’s contest against the Atlanta Braves.
The first catch came in the top of the fourth inning. Braves left fielder Danny Santana was at the plate, and on the first pitch of the at-bat, he cranked the ball foul. It went behind him toward the first base line and up toward the middle deck. Noone saw the ball coming and was able to grab it on the rebound, before it bounced down to the lower stands. And he did it with baseball player style, leaning over the railing and extending his arm to snag it.
Two foul balls … on two pitches!
— Cut4 (@Cut4) July 2, 2017
For anyone, that would have been enough. A graceful foul ball grab? Most people would be sitting in their seat, admiring the ball and texting their friends to tell them, “I was probably on TV just now!” But Noone was still looking alive when Santana fouled off the very next pitch. And you’ve seen this before: the ball is fouled off to the exact same place. And where did that ball go just one pitch earlier? That’s right. Noone caught back-to-back foul balls.
This time, Noone was able to avoid leaning far over the railing, and backed up against the row of seats to catch it. And he caught the second ball with the first one in his other hand.
In the bottom of the tenth inning, it actually happened again: the luckiest man in the stadium got even luckier. Adam Rosales fouled off the 3-1 pitch to the exact same place that Santana had fouled off two balls in the fourth inning. And Noone was there to catch it, his third foul ball of the day!
When the ball was safely in his hand, another A’s fan came up to him and started doing the “I’m not worthy!” bow. Or maybe he was trying to get some of that luck to rub off on him, because Noone obviously had more than enough to share that afternoon.
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