David Ortiz’s eighth-inning grand slam Sunday night may very well have saved the Boston Red Sox’s season, and there was no one more excited about Papi’s clutch home run than Steve Horgan, a Boston police officer who unwittingly became the face of Boston’s epic rally as he celebrated in the Red Sox bullpen.
The 50-year-old Horgan had his face go viral — even making the front page of the Boston Globe sports section — after he was photographed (above) with his arms extended over his head, celebrating as Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter flipped over the wall trying to make a play on Ortiz’s slam.
Horgan learned of his newfound celebrity after the game, when he returned to his phone to find 20 text messages informing him of the global reaction to his reaction.
“I couldn’t even hear myself it was so loud,” the 27-year police veteran, who is on his first full season as the security detail in the Boston bullpen, told ESPN Boston. “I can’t believe it. I don’t know what to think. I can’t believe it. It was an awesome feeling.”
After the game, Horgan met with some of the Red Sox players in the players parking lot. The new most famous fan in Boston also posed for a picture with team owner John Henry as Henry and his wife left the stadium.
According to ESPN, Horgan started growing his now-famous beard at the start of the playoffs — which is really pretty remarkable if that’s his 10-day scruff — and his boss has since instructed him not to shave it for as long as the Sox are still alive.
Of course, at this point, after accidentally becoming the face of a playoff run, he’d be crazy to even consider it.