Mookie Betts robs homer with assistance from Yankee Stadium fan

Robbing home runs is a difficult enough task without having fans around to interfere. Now imagine being Boston Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts trying to extend your glove into the stands at Yankee Stadium while attempting to rob a home run.

That sounds darn near impossible. But Betts was able to pull that trick off during Wednesday’s 8-0 loss to the Yankees, leaping high to snag what appeared to be Chris Carter’s second home run of the game.

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Of course, the play wasn’t without controversy. Replays showed that the baseball actually bounced off the hands of a fan before settling into Betts’ glove. But in a strange twist to the play, it appears the fan’s interference really only served to help Betts as he inadvertently redirected the baseball into Betts’ glove.

Here’s a closer look.

“I didn’t know it hit anybody’s hand or anything,” Betts said after the game. “It kind of happened really fast. But once I got to see the replay, I saw it hit his hand.”

Though Betts’ effort was tremendous, it’s difficult to say with any certainty that he would have made that catch without the redirection. But he did put himself in a good position, and when you’re in a good position good results tend to happen.

“I try to go out there every day and try to learn something new,” Betts added. “I’ve been working around the wall and doing it for the last couple of years and I’m just trying to get familiar with everything. It’s pretty cool just to see that all the work I’ve put in pay off.”

The work is definitely paying off. In fact, after the umpires huddled and ruled no interference one way or the other, Betts officially took the lead for the most home run robberies in MLB dating back to 2014.

An official replay review likely would not have changed the outcome. As it was, Yankees’ manager Joe Girardi had his request for a review rejected when the umpires decided he took too long to signal. And he wasn’t too pleased about that after the game.

Here’s another big unknown: Which team was this fan actually rooting for?

Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts battles a fan for Chris Carter's fly ball. (AP)
Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts battles a fan for Chris Carter’s fly ball. (AP)

If the red shirt is any indication, perhaps he is a Red Sox fan. Then again, Boston sports fans aren’t usually shy about wearing their team logo into enemy territory, so it’s possible he’s a Yankees fan or even a neutral fan taking in a game.

Whatever the case, at least he doesn’t have to worry about being a modern day Jeffrey Maier.

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Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!