Stories about outfielders leaving over outfield fences aren't new. For some decades, the mystery surrounding Sam Rice's 1924 World Series leap into the stands was a famous chunk of baseball's delightful lore. And that low wall in Fenway Park has led to all sorts of drama. In 1997, Jay Buhner robbed pre-Moneyball Scott Hatteberg of a home run. Just this season, Nelson Cruz went ass-over-teakettle into the bullpen, but couldn't prevent Mike Carp's home run.
Still, purely in terms of manpower and imagery, I don't know that we'll ever top what happened in Fenway Park last night. You've got Torii Hunter's legs, which actually became a thing over at Slate. You've got the celebrating Boston policeman, who definitely became a thing in Boston. And you've also got one of the bullpen catchers, who isn't a thing yet but should be. Here's the other bullpen catcher, Brian Abraham, who didn't catch Ortíz's home run:
Another bullpen catcher, Mani Martinez, was on the near side warming Ryan Dempster.
"I kind of had an idea things are happening, going crazy," said Abraham, who's from Worcester. "And then (Joaquin) Benoit came in and as the pitch is happening, it's quiet. Then the bullpen started to get up out of their seats, and Bres (Craig Breslow) kind of put his hand up — so it looked like, 'OK, something good happened.'
"So I turned like an idiot to look up. I see the ball, and it's coming pretty quick and I yell, 'Mani!' I don't know if he heard me."
Martinez must've heard somebody, because he snagged the thing.
So who in the world is Mani Martinez? And what happened after he snagged the thing? Of such, legends are made.