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Young Yankees fan says A-Rod deserved to get grand-slam ball back

September 28, 2013|By Dan Loumena
  • Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is congratulated by teammates after he hit a grand slam in the seventh inning against the San Francisco Giants earlier this month.
Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez is congratulated by teammates after… (Elsa / Getty Images )

When Alex Rodriguez hit his record 24th grand slam of his career earlier this month, the boy who ended up with the ball didn't want to return it to the Yankees third baseman.

But 12-year-old Steven Gieseler Jr. eventually turned it over to a Yankee Stadium security chief because "it's the player's accomplishment," he told Newsday. "He deserves to get it back. He worked hard for it."

That's where Major League Baseball would disagree. Rodriguez, who has admitted to using performance enhancing drugs in the past, is facing a 211-game suspension because of his involvement with the anti-aging clinic Biogenesis, whose founder and owner admits he supplied major leaguers with banned substances.

Gieseler and his father, Steven Sr., nonetheless are Yankees fans and parlayed retrieving the ball into a visit to the team's clubhouse, where they met Rodriguez after the game Sept. 20.

“He said, 'Hey buddy, nice catch,' but I just stood there in awe,” young Steven said.

Steven's favorite Yankee is Lou Gehrig, who just happened to have held the grand slam record of 23 since retiring in 1939.


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