Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Updated: September 15, 6:02 PM ET
Josh Hamilton's slam triggers promotion
By Richard Durrett
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton's grand slam Wednesday caused quite a stir for folks who had seen a local flooring company commercial on television in recent weeks.
In the commercial, Steve Fitzgerald, owner of CC Carpet, says that if Hamilton hits a grand slam, anyone who purchased flooring or countertops in September would get a refund.
The company's website was down and the phone number busy shortly after Hamilton hit his third career grand slam -- and first since 2008 -- in the fourth inning against the Cleveland Indians.
"My IT guy is working on it," Fitzgerald said. "We're so excited. We only wish he had done it right at the end of the promotion so we could have saved folks even more money. But it's great."
Fitzgerald said he estimates that Hamilton's blast probably saved customers a little more than $500,000. His company bought insurance for the promotion.
Hamilton said he thought about the promotion as he came to the plate.
"The situation doesn't come up often, so when it does you can't help but think about it," Hamilton said. "I'm in the business of giving back. I like to help people as much as I can by giving back. So that's cool."
The company issued an explanation of the Grand Slam Payout, which said anyone who purchased flooring or countertops starting Aug. 29 would get a refund if Hamilton hit a bases-loaded home run during the promotion period, which was to run until Sept. 28 or as soon as Hamilton hit a grand slam.
"We wanted to do something that would be fun, but still possible," Fitzgerald said. "There were people trying to get me to do something else, but I thought it had to be Hamilton and a grand slam. My daughter, Morgan, pushed for Hamilton too. It took some phone calls, but we were thrilled to make it work."
The commercial features Fitzgerald and his 27-year-old daughter Morgan, who says after her dad explains the promotion, "Dad, are you crazy?"
He doesn't feel crazy now. He said he's going on a few TV shows on Thursday morning and hopes the promotion increases awareness for his company.
"Maybe the next time we do something, people will think twice and do it," Fitzgerald said. "I knew he'd do it. I told a buddy when he came up with the bases loaded that he was going to do it then. It was exciting."
Richard Durrett covers the Rangers for ESPNDallas.com.