You all remember the Bat Flip that united a nation, now you can own a piece of Toronto Blue Jays history, although it won’t come cheap.
The historic baseball that Blue Jays slugger Jose Bautista sent into orbit off Texas Rangers reliever Sam Dyson in Game 5 of the 2015 ALDS is now up for auction. The ball is being auctioned online by Lelands Auction House and began yesterday with a reserve bid of $3,500.
The auction has two bids and currently sits at $4,235, however, the ball is expected to fetch in the neighborhood of $8000. The auction concludes on February 01st at 10 p.m EST for anyone looking to sneak a bid in at the last minute.
The auction listing includes this caption in the description for the ball:
"This is the exact ball that sources from the fan who caught it; including a signed affidavit and a photo of him celebrating with the ball. The ball itself shows consistent game use with the 2015 Postseason logo on south panel and “Official Ball, 2015 Postseason” label."
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According to Sportsnet, the baseball was caught by Jeff Byma of Cambridge, Ontario who opted to keep the ball after initially offering it back to Jose Bautista. Byma apparently kept the treasured souvenir for two years before selling it to a private collector who has now listed the ball with Lelands.
Byma described how it all played out to the Toronto Star days after the incident.
"“It fell right between my seat and the person next to me and I instinctively jumped on it,” he told the Star. “Once I grabbed it, I gave my girlfriend a hug and we just started cheering and high-fiving each other.”"
The baseball is arguably one of the most symbolic pieces of memorabilia in Blue Jays history and would be a cherished find for any Jays fan. However, who will open up their purse strings the widest to win the Bat Flip crown jewel.
Stay tuned to see how the auction progresses in the coming weeks by clicking HERE and good luck.