PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A 12-year-old boy, with a life-threatening tumor, longed to see a game in PNC Park, and maybe meet a player or two.
The Make-a-Wish Foundation made his wish come true.
Matthew Beichner and his family were invited to lunch in center field. Then, his favorite player joined them. The 12-year-old pitcher from Colorado has been diagnosed with a tumor in his central nervous system.
Make-a-Wish granted his wish to see a Pirates game. Andrew McCutchen’s sudden appearance was a surprise. The boy was asked if Cutch could give him any tips.
“No,” he said with a smile. “I already knew everything.”
The boy presented his idol with a special T-shirt.
“It said ‘Beat Cancer. It’s a team effort,'” Matthew explained.
After lunch, the boy and his idol played a game of catch.
“I’m trying to get some pointers before the game,” McCutchen said with a laugh. “Go to the batting cage and get some hitting tips.”
To top it off, Pirates President Frank Coonelly made a special announcement:
“The Pittsburgh Pirates today are going to be signing Matthew Beichner to a one-day contract to join the Pittsburgh Pirates organization.”
Matthew also got a tour of the locker room, and will throw out the first pitch in the night game. It was a great experience for the boy and his parents.
“He just powers through and does what he has to do,” said his mother, Kim Beichner. “He played baseball while he was still undergoing chemo.”
“Spent a week in the hospital, got out on a Wednesday, and pitched a no-hitter on Saturday,” his father, Rick, added.
General Manager Neal Huntington made it official with a Pirates jersey.
“It was one of the best days ever,” Matthew said.