In the third inning, the third base umpire Ángel Hernández ruled Harper out on strikes, arguing that the outfielder had swung rather than hold back on the full-count pitch.
After Harper went off on Hernández for the controversial call, which caused the ejection, the star threw his helmet into the crowd. The lucky fan who caught it was 10-year-old Hayden Dorfman.
Shortly after Dorfman caught the helmet, security approached him and said Harper wanted to sign the helmet for him, Alex Coffey of The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Harper wrote “Philly! Philly!” along with his autograph on the helmet.
Despite his “favorite player” being ejected in just the third inning, Dorfman admitted that Thursday night was “the best baseball game he’s ever been to,” Coffey shared.
Here is Hayden Dorfman, age 10, who caught the helmet Harper threw after he was ejected tonight. A few security guards approached him and told him Harper wanted to sign it.— Alex Coffey (@byalexcoffey) September 29, 2023
He said Harper is his favorite player and added that this is “the best baseball game he’s ever been to” pic.twitter.com/uq4J3Ylhwf
What a way to turn a rough moment into a happy memory for a fan.