After St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jack Flaherty led his team to a 13-1 rout of the Atlanta Braves in the fifth and deciding game of the National League Division Series earlier this week, he only wanted to reach for one person: his mother.
Flaherty, 23, was adopted at 3 weeks old by a single mother, Eileen, and the two remain as close as can be.
After the game ended, Flaherty, who gave up one run over six innings to earn the win, went to the stands at Atlanta’s SunTrust Park and gave his mom a long hug.
Flaherty, who grew up in Los Angeles, has nothing but love for his mother.
“She’s special. She’s a special woman. And there’s no other way to put it,” he told FS1 back in February. “She’s done absolutely everything possible for me to be in the position that I’m in right now. And there’s not enough ways for me to thank her. It’s just a special relationship that we have and that we’ve built, but she’s a special woman.”
Flaherty may be all grown up and a bona fide major league star, but he’s still not above hanging out with his mother. He told FS1 that he lives close to his mom and goes to her place for dinner almost every night.
Flaherty is clearly grateful that she is a part of his life.
“I don’t know when she actually told me that I was (adopted), but I’ve been thankful every day because had that not happened I don’t know where I’d be right now,” he said. “I don’t know what position I’d be in and I definitely wouldn’t be sitting here today.”
And what a position he is in. Flaherty blossomed as a pitcher this season, going 11-8 overall. In the second half of the season, he went 7-2 with an ERA under 1, helping him notch National League pitcher of the month honors in August and September.
Flaherty will have the chance to share more special memories as his Cardinals get set to square off against the Washington Nationals in the National League Championship Series, with the winner punching a ticket to the World Series.
Flaherty is expected to be the starting pitcher in Game 3 on Monday and could toe the rubber again if the series goes to a sixth or seventh game.