On July 4, 2014 I was in Denver, Colorado for softball nationals when I tweeted a picture of a poster I had made for my favorite Dodgers player, Matt Kemp. The Dodgers were playing the Rockies in the mile high city that night and I was going to the game. I was so excited and when I showed up Kemp turned out to not be in the line-up. I was devastated, even while getting Andre Ethier to sign my poster that night, I was crushed I didn’t get to see my favorite player in action.
The next day as I was finishing up my day of playing softball I checked my phone. The craziest, most spectacular notification I have ever received was highlighted on the home screen.
MATT KEMP TWEETED ME.
@KaiileeNiicolee awesome thanks
— Matt Kemp (@TheRealMattKemp) July 5, 2014
I cried, I was on cloud nine. I couldn’t think of a happier moment. I thought to myself, the only thing that could top this is meeting this spectacular human.
It was a warm summer day on August 6, 2014. I was sitting at home when my best friend texted me saying “Hey, lets go to a ball game.”
It was an in town rival game, the Anaheim Angelsvs. the Los Angeles Dodgers. My best friend is an Angels fan and continued to say “I have front row seats next to the Dodgers dugout, your odds of meeting Matt Kemp could be pretty high.”
I was in shock, awe. Why would she get seats next to the Dodgers dugout when I am the Dodgers fan and they’re rivals? Yet, I didn’t care enough to ask, I was filled with excitement. I scrambled to put on all my Dodgers gear, grabbed my poster and marker and raced to her house where she was waiting in the car to drive down to Angels Stadium.
We arrived 2 hours early, while waiting for an hour outside of the stadium for the gates to open and then to go sit in our front row seats. We watched and screamed his name as he warmed up on the green grass of the outfield.
I can still remember it to this day, he waved to me. “He better get over here, he better take a picture with me,” I said.
We continued to wait. We continued to watch. We continued to scream his name and wave my poster from Twitter around. He kept smiling and looking over, yet he wouldn’t come over. What was wrong, why wouldn’t he come over? Was he too focused?
It was drawing near to the start of the game, I can remember shaking and getting sad. Losing hope. I remember thinking, theres no way he’s going to come over now… Its too close to the game, the national anthem is beginning, the game is starting in 2 minutes, I have no chance.
Then, with 2 minutes before the first pitch bolting from the dugout comes Matt Kemp. He ran straight to me.
I screamed, I teared up. He came over and said “Do you have a marker?” I stuttered and said, “Uh… yeah!” Frozen, I then asked “..Caaan we.. take a picture?” He grinned as my heart melted and said, “Of course we can, I love your poster.”
My heart was filled with joy. My life was in a complete haze for 2 minutes of my life. Matt Kemp, my favorite player, came over before his game to see me, to talk to me. He returned to the field for the first pitch and we returned to our seats where I sat reliving the moment over and over in my head.
I couldn’t stop talking about it, I couldn’t stop shaking, I couldn’t stop repeating the entire occurrence. It was the HAPPIEST I’ve ever been.
As the game began, the first two batters of the game struck out, Matt Kemp being the number three batter stepped up to the plate. Still in tears from meeting my favorite player, I watched eagerly to see what would happen.
First pitch comes in.
HOME RUN, MATT KEMP!!!
He ran around the bases pointing in my direction then followed by pointing up to the sky and touching home plate.
Tears of joy continued, they streamed down my face. It was the best of my life. One I will never forget, one I will forever cherish, one I will share for the rest of my life. Still to this day, I claim that home run was because he came over to say hi to me, I gave him some good luck.
Matt Kemp has been traded twice since that game in 2014, first to the San Diego Padres and just this past season to the Atlanta Braves, but every game that I have been at to watch him play, no matter what team he has been a part of, he has hit a home run. I would like to say I am his good luck charm. LOL