ANAHEIM — Saturday was a beautiful day to be Carlos Correa‘s youthful sister, Leibysand Correa. On her brother’s dime, she bought to fly to the Los Angeles space to have a good time her 14th birthday round her prolonged household on the ballpark.
She bought to look at her huge brother homer and attain base 5 instances, and she or he even bought to look at her favourite participant within the huge leagues hit a house run, too. You see, these are two completely different gamers — as a result of she’s an even bigger fan of Shohei Ohtani than she is of her personal brother.
Yep, such is Ohtani’s stature within the sport that even the youthful sister of one in all his longtime divisional nemeses overtly cheers for the two-way Angels celebrity. All she wished for her birthday was a photograph with Ohtani, and Correa, being the household man that he’s, flew his mother and father and sister in from Puerto Rico to make her desires come true earlier than the Twins’ 11-inning loss.
“She went to the room final evening and she or he had probably the most wonderful birthday, after all,” Correa stated. “I hit a homer. Ohtani hit a homer. She bought to satisfy him, took an image with him. It was just about the proper birthday for her, in order that made me actually comfortable.”
Earlier than Saturday’s sport, Correa’s mother and father and sister waited within the space outdoors of the clubhouses at Angel Stadium, hoping that Ohtani would have an opportunity to flee his pregame routine for that picture. When the celebrity appeared, Leiby truly saved her cool, bought the picture she’d hoped for and bought her Ohtani jersey signed. (That is proper: Each of Correa’s mother and father have been sporting their son’s jersey to the sport, however Leiby proudly wore a shiny purple Ohtani jersey.)
In reality, she has began studying how one can communicate Japanese due to her Ohtani fandom, and she or he bought an opportunity to follow her language abilities together with her idol (although Carlos had no thought what they have been saying to one another).
And as quickly as Ohtani left and the doorways to the Angels clubhouse closed, Leiby broke down in sobs.
“Not crying — she was bawling,” Correa stated. “She flooded the corridor together with her tears.”
An hour or so later, Correa stepped to the plate and crushed his 14th homer of the yr, an opposite-field blast to right-center. He was proud to have hit his 14th homer on his sister’s 14th birthday. However within the eighth inning, his rival for his sister’s affection one-upped him by mashing a homer to middle subject — simply out of attain of Byron Buxton — which loomed massive within the Angels’ eventual comeback victory.
And in Correa’s thoughts, there was no query which of these homers Leiby loved extra.
“His, 100%,” Correa stated. “She’s uninterested in watching me hit residence runs. She watches each one in all my video games. She’s by no means seen Ohtani dwell hitting a homer on her birthday.”
Although Correa and Ohtani had been rival stars within the American League West for 4 seasons and had a pleasant relationship, the timing had by no means fairly lined up for Correa to attempt to deliver his sister to a sport towards the Angels and arrange that assembly.
And although Leiby had joked main into the sport that she hoped that Carlos would get successful however that Ohtani would win, Carlos did not take it personally in any respect — as a result of Ohtani is the kind of participant he desires her to idolize.
“She’s obsessive about him, and that makes me very comfortable, as a result of he’s an important position mannequin,” Correa stated. “He is a man that clearly is making historical past each single evening and he’s only a nice position mannequin to have, so for her to look as much as a man like him, it’s good.”
Correa’s mother and father and sister left Anaheim on Sunday, sure for Houston, the place Leiby will begin a brand new faculty yr on Monday. It is protected to say she’ll have a spring in her step.
“I’m positive she is going to keep in mind this one for a very long time, and I’m very appreciative of Ohtani taking his time to take an image together with her as a result of I understand how busy he’s and I do know everybody desires a bit of Ohtani,” Correa stated. “He’s the most important celebrity on this sport, so for him to exit of his manner and provides her a pair minutes of his time, to me, which means the world.”