Until they’re eliminated from the playoffs, the reigning World Series champion Astros are still the kings of baseball. The Astros’ victory in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series was in front of a former president.
George W. Bush, the 43rd U.S. president and former Texas governor, attended Wednesday’s game at Globe Life Field. The former Rangers co-owner is widely known as a baseball fan. In fact, reporters briefly chatted with President Bush after he left the Astros clubhouse minutes before the first pitch of Game 3.
President Bush said he visited with manager Dusty Baker, who he called “a good man” but was especially excited to meet Dusty’s son, Darren Baker.
Reporters asked the younger Baker, now a 24-years-old minor league player in the Washington Nationals organization, what it was like having a former president pull him aside.
“I was a little nervous,” Darren Baker admitted. “It’s the president, you know? He said he remembered the play with me getting picked up. He took a picture of just me and him.”
During Bush’s presidency, Darren – a then-3-year-old bat boy for his dad’s 2002 San Francisco Giants, was nearly run over while trying to retrieve a bat at home plate during a World Series game. Major League Baseball would later institute a 14-year-old age requirement for bat boys.
“I’m waiting to get the picture, but I’ll definitely put it up somewhere,” Darren Baker said. “Right after, when we got into my dad’s office, I called my mom and told her the president asked to take a picture with just me and him. He took it with a real camera, thankfully not just on my iPhone. If I had my dad take it, he might have had his finger over the camera. I’m going to get that sometime today.”