PHOENIX — This canine gave new meaning to the term dog catcher.
And what a catch.
During Saturday’s spring training baseball game between the Kansas City Royals and Los Angeles Dodgers at Camelback Ranch, a pooch pounced on a home run ball, MLB.com reported. And like any baseball fan, the dog would not let go of its newfound souvenir.
In the seventh inning of Saturday’s Cactus League game, Dodgers prospect Michael Busch led off with his second homer of the spring, connecting off Taylor Clarke and sending the ball over the left-field wall, Sports Illustrated reported.
As fans scrambled for the baseball, the K-9-trained dog waited for the ball to bounce its way, according to the magazine.
The dog clenched the baseball between its jaws and would not let go, MLB.com reported.
It was not until the dog’s owner, a man wearing a Dodgers K-9 jersey, petted the animal on its head that the animal relinquished its grip on the baseball.
While unusual, it is not the first time a dog has come up with a home run ball.
On Oct. 4, 2022, Francisco Lindor launched his 26th home run of the season at New York’s Citi Field off Washington’s Paolo Espino, according to Retrosheet.org.
It was the second of three consecutive home runs for the Mets leading off the bottom of the first inning during a seven-run rally as New York coasted to an 8-0 victory against the Nationals in the second game of a doubleheader.
The dog came up with the ball in the upper deck in the right field stands and was perfectly happy to gnaw on it.