The guy who caught the José Bautista bat flip homer wants to give the ball back to Bautista

Jose Bautista of the Toronto Blue Jays
(Image credit: Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

It might be the most famous baseball of the 2015 MLB season: In Game 5 of the American League Division Series against the Texas Rangers, the Toronto Blue Jays' José Bautista hit a game-clinching three-run homer into the stands. Before running the bases, a super-pumped Bautista watched the ball sail out of the park, and then executed one of the most glorious bat flips of all time.

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"I would have loved to see where it landed. I thought it was hilarious. I laughed at it," Royals center fielder Lorenzo Cain marveled afterward. There are, of course, many people who would want to own a piece of that moment forever (at least one fan has it tattooed on his body). The jersey Bautista was wearing when he hit the home run, for example, has reportedly sold for $27,606. But what of the ball itself?

Well, the ball is in the hands of a very lucky Blue Jays fan: Jeff Byma, 31, who was attending the game with his girlfriend. Byma nabbed the ball after it bounced off the second deck at the Rogers Centre. "It didn't hit me until the drive home how important a baseball I have," Byma said. Fans have offered him everything from $8,500 to a pick-up truck for the ball, The Toronto Star reports.

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In fact, Byma does wants to get rid of the ball — but not for a price. He wants to return it to Bautista, who he believes is the rightful owner.

"I would be shocked if he doesn't want it back," Byma, whose been trying to reach Bautista over Twitter, told The Star. "It hasn't crossed my mind to sell it one day. I just got to get it back to José."

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Jeva Lange

Jeva Lange was the executive editor at She formerly served as The Week's deputy editor and culture critic. She is also a contributor to Screen Slate, and her writing has appeared in The New York Daily News, The Awl, Vice, and Gothamist, among other publications. Jeva lives in New York City. Follow her on Twitter.