Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo took a 3-0 pitch from Phillies’ starter Cole Irvin and sent it screaming into the Budweiser sign in right field in the Cubs 8-4 win Wednesday night.
The 39,000 fans in attendance were cheering and high-fiving until it became clear a murder had occurred. As Rizzo rounded third, a silence fell over the crowd and many fans removed their hats out of respect for the life the ball had given to the players and fans.
“Of course I feel bad about it,” said Rizzo after the game. “You want to hit the ball hard, but murder is serious and it’s an uncomfortable feeling knowing you took breathe out of something.”
Added Rizzo: “No going back now though. And if I’m being honest, I think Cole should take some of the blame for serving up such a fatty on 3-0. I mean that was like stealing candy from a sleeping baby.”
Rizzo will miss the Cubs game Thursday afternoon to deliver the eulogy for the ball he so ruthlessly murdered. This custom originated in 2005 after murdered balls first became an official stat.
Albert Pujols’s homer off Brad Lidge in the 2005 NLCS was the first official murdered baseball according to BaseballReference.com.