On Saturday, Houston Astros catcher Max Stassi stepped up and smacked his first career home run at the MLB level. The blast, which cleared the wall in right field at Minute Maid Park, came against his former club the Oakland Athletics.
After the game, Stassi - who has been playing semi-frequently for Houston lately with main catcher Jason Castro just having returned to the lineup - explained to Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle the personal motivation behind the homer.
He dedicated the moment to his cousins Chari and Andrea, who have both experienced some tough losses lately. Said Stassi to Ortiz: "It felt great. I've been playing with a little heavy heart recently. I have had a couple of cousins who lost their husbands in the last couple of weeks, so I dedicate that one to them. It was pretty special for me. One of my cousins lost her husband about two weeks ago, and another one lost him about three nights ago. It's been tough at home, but that one was for them."
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Considering the context, it probably felt special not only for Stassi, but for Chari and Andrea as well.
For his career, the 24-year-old Stassi has now appeared in 18 games and has had 40 official at-bats in limited playing time.