It was the bottom of the fourth inning. The Phillies were at home facing the Miami Marlins, and the last thing on the mind of Dennis Pollock was the safety of his wife, Louise.
But when Phils shortstop Freddy Galvis' foul ball came tumbling down toward her face, Dennis let instinct take over and made a bare-handed catch before the baseball hit her face.
Pollock was happy enough to catch a foul ball, which is proudly displayed at their home alongside tickets from the game. Now his heads-up grab from the May 16 game at Citizens Bank Park has been named the Best Fan Catch of the Year by Major League Baseball.
"We are becoming kind of known for that catch in areas that we go," Pollock told MLB.com. "If we go to the supermarket or the store, we get, 'Hey, you are that guy who caught that foul ball.' "
It was one of 19 awards given out Friday night at the Esurance MLB Awards show (originally referred to as This Year in Baseball Awards and, from 2011-14, the GIBBYS). The results are based on votes by former MLB players, front-office executives, reporters and fans.
South Jersey native Mike Trout was the night's big winner, taking home another well-deserved MVP award and the award as the Best Major Leaguer. Other winners including Washington Nationals righthander Max Scherzer, Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo, and retiring Red Sox great David Ortiz.