A boyhood dream come true
Outfielder Chas McCormick preserved Houston's Game 5 win with a stunning catch against his hometown team.
The ball jumped off of J.T. Realmuto's bat, and it immediately looked like trouble.
Astros centerfielder Chas McCormick drifted back, running out of room.
He inched back further.
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He felt for the fence with his hand and jumped, and somehow, some way, snared the ball in his glove to preserve Houston's 3-2 victory over Philadelphia Thursday in Game 5 of the World Series. It was maybe the biggest play of the entire series, the capstone of a stomach-churning game that could have turned at any moment.
It was the kind of moment you dream of as a boy.
But for McCormick, in his boyhood dreams, he was playing for the other team. The Pennsylvania native grew up in West Chester, not too far away from Philadelphia. He used to watch games at Citizens Bank Park as a fan.
“I thought he hit it out,” he told Fox’s Ken Rosenthal after the game.
“It felt like a dream playing here,” he added.
After a strong athletic career at Henderson High School, McCormick wound up attending Division II Millersville University, the same school I graduated from.
He was solid for Millersville, setting numerous team marks, and still holds the PSAC conference record for hits.
Millersville’s baseball team has had a handful of players reach the major leagues — among them the Blue Jays' Tim Mayza — and McCormick took a long, steady road to get there after being selected in the 21st round in the 2017 draft.
Not exactly a marquee prospect! But he kept hitting, just as he did at Millersville, reaching Double-A by 2018 and Triple-A the following year.
The “Chasmanian Devil” made his MLB debut in April 2021 and has been a solid contributor for Houston, whether with his bat or his glove.
He’s found a way to contribute during Houston’s playoff run — a walk here, a single there, a diving stop at an important time.
But Thursday’s catch stands apart. The biggest stage, with the outcome hanging in the balance. A catch for the ages.
The kind of moment McCormick has been dreaming about for a long, long time.