HOUSTON — Astros slugger Yordan Alvarez helped deliver Houston's clinching Game 6 World Series win on Saturday night with one swing of the bat.
Houston was down 1-0 with two men on base when Alvarez hit his monumental three-run homer that went an estimated 450 feet and gave the Astros the lead for good.
The ball landed over the batter's eye in center field at Minute Maid Park and Jim Rice knew he wasn't going to let anyone else get it.
Rice is a lifelong Astros fan
"I'm sitting in dead center field. I'm thinking there's no way a ball is getting up there," he said.
The seats above the batter's eye at Minute Maid Park don't get many balls hit to them. That's why Rice said he was kind of caught off guard.
"All of a sudden you heard a sound you don't hear very often," Rice said. "I see it coming straight for me ... it carries, carries and carries, next thing I know the ball is right up on me. My first instinct is to dive on it."
He had to act quickly if he wanted the souvenir of a lifetime.
"There was no way I was going to let anyone else grab this ball," he said. "I grabbed it and I cannot tell you the feeling I had when I raised it above my head."
He said he's still on Cloud 9.
"It's the biggest home run in Astros history, probably. For me to be able to be a small part of that by recovering the ball ... it's incredible," Rice said.
Rice said he was offered $100,000 for the ball.
He turned it down.
For Rice, it's not about the money. To him, the memory is worth so much more.
"Right now, my plan is to keep it," he said. "It's the greatest keepsake I've ever walked away with from an Astros game. It was one of the greatest moments of my sports history life."
Here's part of the interview with Rice: