Part of the legend of Babe Ruth was how he promised to hit a home run for a young boy in a hospital. The story became legend not just because it spoke to The Babe’s home run prowess, but also because it showed a softer side of him – how he always treated children kindly. Perhaps, it was because beneath it all, the godlike Ruth was a caring human being just like the rest of us.
On July 29th, Tim Tebow had his Babe Ruth moment:
During the game, a young boy named Seth Bosch wanted to meet his hero, Tim Tebow. Seth is no ordinary boy. The nine year old is autistic, suffers from neurofibromatosis, and he has a tumor behind his right eye.
Seth found his moment when he went from his seat to the front row and got Tebow’s attention. The St. Lucie outfielder stopped his warm-up swings from the on deck circle to go over to the netting and shake the young man’s hand.
As if the story of one of the most recognizable athletes in the United States taking the time to shake the hand of a young fan wasn’t enough, he followed it up with a Ruthian opposite field homer. Understandably, Seth’s whole family was overcome with emotion. As his mother said:
When Seth came back to his seat, he was crying. And then Tim hit the homer. I started crying, too. How does that happen? I think God brought Seth and Tim together. (Martin Fennelly, Tampa Bay Times)
These moments right here are what make the Mets signing of Tebow worth it. It’s the drawing new fans to the game. It’s his basic human decency to take time for a fan. It’s about an incredible moment you see once every other century.
Most of us grew up dreaming of replicating our own Babe Ruth moment. We all stood at the plate and called our shot in the sandlot or our parent’s backyard.
For Tebow, his Babe Ruth moment was shaking the hand of a young fan and going out there and hitting a home run. No, Tebow probably didn’t promise a homer like The Babe did, but that is of little difference to those of us who saw it happen. It certainly didn’t matter to the family who was overwhelmed with emotion by both the handshake and the homer.