After Los Angeles Dodgers Catcher Will Smith hit a home run in the sixth inning of Game 2 of the World Series last Wednesday night, a fan in the outfield caught the ball and proceeded to throw his glove onto the field in a moment that has since gone viral.
What if we told you that guy was a track owner and race car driver?
Lakeville, IN’s Kevin Sauer co-owns South Bend Motor Speedway (IN) with brother Vernon, where they also compete in the weekly Outlaw Super Late Model division. He lived up to his nickname “Mr. Excitement” Wednesday night at Globe Life Field in Arlington, TX and created a moment nobody will soon forget.
This fan caught Will Smith’s HR ball… and threw his glove on the field? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/0MNh1MwUeR
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 22, 2020
You’ve Gotta Love This Dude Who Caught a Homer At The World Series And Was So Happy That He Completely Lost His Mind And Threw His Glove On The Field https://t.co/dhAotlOVg6 pic.twitter.com/FMqnZlALQt
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) October 22, 2020
“I told my wife prior to that I wasn’t throwing the ball back if I caught one because they taunt you pretty good, and I was sitting all around Tampa Bay fans,” Sauer told Speed51. “It’s like Wrigley Field there, if the opposing team hit a home run, they would taunt you for nine innings before you threw that ball back.
“So I told my wife two innings before that if I catch one, I’m throwing my mitt. And that’s what I did. It was like a decoy, they forgot about the ball.”
Sauer has been around baseball his whole life, playing throughout his childhood. Nowadays, he is a big Chicago Cubs fans who makes frequent trips to Wrigley Field each season. With that being said, it became second nature to him once he saw the ball coming his way in left field.
“There wasn’t much thinking, you just see it. With my reaction, I’ve played ball all my life. I knew where to get it and I got there. It floated on me at the last second, that’s why I ended up in the row behind me.”
He and his brother Vernon have owned South Bend Motor Speedway since December 2015. The track has since seen a sharp increase in both car and fan counts. Both drivers competed weekly in the Outlaw Super Late Model division at the high-banked quarter-mile before purchasing the track, and they continue to do so today.
Sauer has also expanded his reach away from South Bend, winning an Outlaw SLM feature at New Paris back in June and making his first Kalamazoo Klash main event last year. He also sponsors several drivers in the area with his company Bran Roofing, even riding on the car Cayden Lapcevich took to the pole in the Winchester 400 last month.
Sauer has perhaps the most recognizable cars in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan. He has donned several Disney-themed paint schemes over the years, piloting a Buzz Lightyear car himself while providing a Winnie The Pooh machine for several other drivers, including former NASCAR driver Kenny Wallace.
It is another way he helps promote the sport to the younger generation.
“It’s for the kids. My mom and dad took us down to Disney every year for two weeks. I loved it and so did the kids. It’s all to bring the kids in. If you can bring the kids in, they grow up loving it. If you wait until they’re 16, they’re harder to catch.”
-Story by: Koty Geyer, Speed51 National Correspondent – Twitter: @kgeyer3
-Photo Credit: Kevin Sauer Facebook