Advertisement

Swarm of bees delays Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Los Angeles game in Arizona. A ‘MVP’ beekeeper came to the rescue

Major League Baseball fans had an unexpected buzz on Tuesday after a swarm of bees delayed the Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Los Angeles Dodgers game for around two hours.

Just five minutes before the game was about to start, the swarm took up residency in the netting behind home plate at Arizona’s Chase Field, leading officials to worry that a foul ball could cause the winged insects to move towards fans.

With no end in sight to the snafu, the call went out to bee wrangler Matt Hilton, who was summoned from his son’s baseball game to the big leagues to tackle the problem.

Hilton donned a beekeeper’s top and mask as he walked on to the pitch to chants of “MVP” and the tune of Bonnie Tyler’s “Holding Out for a Hero” while he got to work, spraying and removing the bees using a vacuum. The bees were scheduled to be released afterwards, according to the league.

Beekeeper Matt Hilton reacts to fans before throwing out the ceremonial first pitch. - Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Beekeeper Matt Hilton reacts to fans before throwing out the ceremonial first pitch. - Christian Petersen/Getty Images

“Well, we know that this was really important to get these games going, and so when we hear that there’s bee issues out at [the] Diamondbacks’ stadium, we tried to get at it right away,” Hilton said afterwards. “We were happy to deploy really quickly and come get this game going.”

Hilton’s efforts were later rewarded with the chance to throw out the first pitch, and then the game was finally underway.

It would go on to extra innings, the Diamondbacks winnig it in the 10th by a score of 4-3 thanks to a two-run walk-off home run from Christian Walker. It was his second home run of the game.

This isn’t the first time a sporting event has been affected due to bees in 2024. This year’s Indian Wells tournament saw a lengthy delay to the quarterfinal between Carlos Alcaraz and Alexander Zverev after a swarm of bees descended on the court. Last year, some 20,000 bees took center stage at an Irish cricket match in Cork.

CNN’s Jill Martin and Brandon Barnes contributed reporting.

For more CNN news and newsletters create an account at CNN.com