Boy lost out on foul ball but has received a lot more

Thursday, June 17, 2004

ARLINGTON, Texas -- A 4-year-old boy who lost a foul ball to a not-so-grown-up adult is getting a windfall worthy of a game-winning home run hitter.

A man sitting behind Nick O'Brien at a Texas Rangers baseball game Sunday knocked the boy against the seats as he dived to get a foul ball. Fans started chanting "Give him the ball!" but the man wouldn't give it up.

"I couldn't believe someone would do something like that to a 4-year-old boy," said Nick's mother, Edie O'Brien.

Video shows Nick was standing up as the man dived across the boy's seat to grab the ball at Nick's feet. The man's leg strikes the boy, and the boy is jostled a second time as the man stands up with the ball and appears to exchange words with the mother.

Nick wasn't hurt, but fan outrage mushroomed.

Meanwhile, the Rangers and the St. Louis Cardinals quickly made sure Nick got souvenirs of his own -- two bats and four baseballs, including one signed by Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan, a former Ranger.

Cardinals outfielder Reggie Sanders came out between innings to give Nick a bat and ball. "In my heart, I thought I should do something," said Sanders. "It's all about the kids."

On "Good Morning America," host Charles Gibson gave the O'Briens more souvenirs Wednesday -- this time from the New York Mets. The family was given tickets to Wednesday night's game against the Cleveland Indians.

"Wow," Nick responded.

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