If I Caught McGwire's 62nd...

_____In a historic moment, on a Tuesday evening, Mark McGwire eclipsed Roger Maris’s single season home run record of 61 with a massive swing that connected squarely on a fastball thrown by Steve Trachsel of the Chicago Cubs. The balls he hit were specially marked that night, and number 62 landed in the ground’s crew pit, beyond the reach of the frenzied fans. A ground’s crew member named Tim Forneris rushed over to retrieve the priceless artifact, and promptly returned the ball to Mr. McGwire for absolutely nothing at all. In theory, the ball was calculated to be worth a million dollars, and it was generously returned by a kind hearted man who had no illusions about glamour and riches he would reap from #62. Still, one cannot NOT think of what would have happened if they had the baseball in their back pocket that was worth a life-time’s salary in sweat and blood for the average Joe.

_____Personally, if I had the fortune and skills to get the ball, it really would be an enormous decision on my part. Not everyone earns $9.5 million dollars a year like McGwire so it’s easy for him to say the ball is not worth a single cent, and one million dollars is a lot of money. Of course, everyone knows the right thing to do is to donate the ball for free to the baseball Hall of Fame, where it really belongs, but consider a person in a tight situation financially. He’s in debt, his business is settling on net losses quarterly, and he’s having trouble paying his rent and bills. The home run ball, the single most treasured artifact in baseball this season, could be the answer to all his problems. He could send his children through college, pay off the bank and MasterCard, and if he manages the money well, retire for life. The choice remains, all the previously stated advantages, against a hearty thanks from McGwire and the baseball community plus a life-time family pass to Cooperstown (which Forneris requested and received).

_____This is the classic example of "easier said than done", because my answer to the question is, also, to return the ball to its rightful place in history. I believe it is the correct thing to do, and the knowledge of #62 being in good hands of the Hall of Fame managers against it being in a greedy entrepreneur’s re-affirms how I would feel about my decision. Still, one would never know unless the situation actually occurred, because as the saying goes, "war plans mean nothing in the heat of battle". Should a person had taken the ball and sold it for a lifetime’s riches, he or she would undoubtedly have been extremely unpopular and known for his or her greed and selfishness. However, think about what I said above, how it would solve a person’s financial problems for life. Could you really blame him or her for his or hers decision? To some people, being able to put food on the table everyday and to be able to live without the threat of being unable to pay your bills is a lot more important than any "thank you" or family passes to the Hall of Fame could ever be. That’s just the way the world works.