Sunday’s Pirates-Reds game provided us with several memorable moments and images. None, however, so impactful as the tender moment that both teams came together to provide.
Little Jimmy Simmons had always dreamed of playing for the Pittsburgh Pirates and being part of an official MLB game. In a heart-warming moment, the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds let little Jimmy come to bat against Pirates ace, Chris Archer. What followed was nothing short of moving.
In an effort to give little Jimmy the complete experience, both teams went out of their way to provide him that, and more, by putting him in the middle of a benches-clearing brawl.
“Honestly, it was a heartwarming moment that choked me up,” recalled Pirates catcher Francisco Cervelli. “Me and Chris [Archer] decided to give him the most complete and genuine experience. So, I called for a fastball to his head and then, amazingly, the rest of the team got in the spirit of the moment and started wailing on him with hay-makers and sucker punches.”
After the Pirates ace plunked Jimmy with a 97 mph fastball to the face, Francisco Cervelli, in a effort to help little Jimmy charge the mound, lifted and chucked the Make-A-Wish child towards the mound as all players rushed in to get in on the action. The opposing Cincinnati Reds decided to partake in the charitable moment, as well.
“I will sleep well tonight knowing that we did something special for that kid. We really gave him the complete experience. I threw in a few more right hooks to his face because I got caught up in such a beautiful moment. I don’t know, I was feeling very generous,” explained Reds outfielder Yasiel Puig.
The crowd at PNC Park were prompt in getting out of their seats to applaud both teams’ generosity to set aside the competition and come together to deliver in a moment that was bigger than the game.
“At the end of the day, it’s all about helping other people and making an impact on their lives. We sure made several impacts on that kid’s life and it brought people together,” said a tearful Clint Hurdle.