I love watching walkoff homeruns; unless – of course – it is against the Blue Jays.
The hero rounds the bases and prepares for the welcoming party waiting for him at home plate.
The hero flings his helmet into the air, while he receives a shower of Gatorade and pats on the back in varying degrees from his teammates. Uniforms might get torn, but the happiness outweighs the ripped garments.
Some might say it’s over the top, disrespectful and violates the very core of sportsmanship. But I disagree. It’s pure, raw drama. It’s what makes baseball beautiful and adds to its artistry.
To date, I have witnessed three walkoff homeruns in person:
1) June 15, 2003 – Reed Johnson, against the Chicago Cubs.
2) September 27, 2015 – Josh Donaldson against Tampa Bay.
3) June 10, 2016 – Edwin Encarnacion against Baltimore.
Leading up to Edwin’s walkoff, I was sitting in my Skydome seat with a goal in mind.
The match was reaching a point where it was clear the Jays would need to win in their final at bat; either the bottom of the ninth or in extra innings.
I started thinking of how Adele called out a fan at a recent concert for recording her performance. She was mad because the fan was more concerned about capturing the moment than enjoying it.
That’s a struggle I’ve experienced multiple times in my life. I’d take a picture of something and a voice would ask if I cared more about taking the photo than appreciating what I was looking at.
So as the match approached its conclusion, I made the decision to focus on what was happening than capturing it on my phone.
My decision paid off.
Edwin came to plate and sent the ball over the right field wall. When he hit that homerun, I wasn’t thinking about anything else because I was living in the moment and enjoying every minute of it.
Everything that normally bothered me wasn’t bothering me. The constant noise in my head was silent. There were no fears or insecurities. 100% of my focus was on the man “walking the parrot” as the crowd was in complete ecstasy.
So thank you, Edwin. Thank you for helping me live in the moment.