Two Ball Girls Who Survived Las Vegas Massacre Return to Dodger Stadium for Game 2 of NLCS - NBC 7 San Diego

Two Ball Girls Who Survived Las Vegas Massacre Return to Dodger Stadium for Game 2 of NLCS

Los Angeles Dodgers ball girls, Christina Zambrana and Amy Moore, who both survived the Las Vegas massacre, return to Dodger Stadium for the first time on Sunday.



    Two Ball Girls Who Survived Las Vegas Massacre Return to Dodger Stadium for Game 2 of NLCS
    Jill Weisleder/Dodgers
    Los Angeles Dodgers ballgirls Amy Moore (left) and Christina Zambrana (right), pose for a picture before the team's Fourth of July game at Dodger Stadium. The two girls survived the Las Vegas Shooting on October 1, 2017.

    Some stories just put things in perspective.

    On October 1, 2017, just after 10:00PM PST, a shooter opened fire on a country music festival in Las Vegas, Nevada, from his perch atop the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Casino.

    Over 500 people were injured and 58 people lost their lives in the largest mass shooting in modern American history. 

    Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, the five-time National League West Champion Dodgers had ended their season with the best record in baseball, and were anxiously awaiting to find out their opponent in the NLDS.

    Little did the team know, two of their family members were amongst the 20,000 in attendance at the Route 91 Harvest Festival. 

    Despite never stepping between the baselines, Christina Zambrana, 27, and Amy Moore, 26, both former collegiate softball players, have made a major impact on the Dodgers' 2017 season.

    You probably don't know their names or faces, but chances are, if you've been to Chavez Ravine this season, you've seen them sitting on buckets with wearing Dodger jerseys and gloves on their hands.

    They are the Dodger ball girls and throughout the season have made multiple highlight reel catches in order to protect fans from oncoming foul balls.

    In addition to their duties during the game, they also have formed relationships with the players as they warm up the outfielders between innings. 

    One of those players is star right fielder Yasiel Puig. 

    Puig has gotten to know Zambrana over the course of the season and often warms up with her in right field. Once he heard that she and Moore were at the concert in Las Vegas, he immediately asked Dodgers officials for her number so he could text her to see if she was alright. 

    Puig told NBC4 before Game 1 of the NLCS on Saturday that he texted with the girls once he found out about the shooting and they texted him back that they were OK. 

    Later, Puig would become the player of the game as he would hit his first career postseason home run and also knocked in the first run with an RBI double in the bottom of the fifth inning. 

    Puig is off to a sensational start to his 2017 postseason campaign, but for Moore and Zambrana, they make their postseason debut on Sunday in Game 2.

    After the shooting, they were given the NLDS off and will return to Dodger Stadium for the first time to work Game 2 of the National League Championship Series against the Cubs.

    Exactly two weeks to the day their lives changed forever.

    Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times was the first to write the tale of the ball girls in his column earlier this week.

    According to the two girls interview with Plaschke, they literally ran for their lives after they heard the gunshots, hiding under a table, holding each other's hands until they could run to safety.

    "We were just running for our lives," Moore told the LA Times. "We knew if we didn't get out of there, we were just going to die." 

    The harrowing tale continued as Moore had to drag Zambrana around a metal fence before she was crushed by a herd of concertgoers running for the exits and for their lives.

    Later, Moore lost her shoes and Zambrana carried her on her back to safety.

    "We thought, 'Is this going to be it?'" said Moore. "It sounded like we were on a gun range. It was right on top of us."

    Their story of survival is as horrifying as it is heartwarming. After running for their lives beneath a hailstorm of bullets, the two girls began to help others who had been injured or shot.

    "People getting shot all over the place, blood everywhere, I just kept saying, 'C’mon, c’mon, go, go, go,'" Moore said. "It could have been us. It was like we were protected by angels."

    Moore comforted victims as they waited for ambulances to arrive, and Zambrana removed her belt and used it as a tourniquet on the wrist of a victim who had been shot.

    Puts things in perspective, huh?

    While most would assume that baseball is the last thing on the minds of Moore and Zambrana right now, the two girls believe that returning to the baselines of Dodger Stadium is just what they need in order to begin to heal.

    "It will be like normal," Zambrana said. "It will be healing."

    When they take the field on Sunday, we imagine it will seem almost surreal. From fleeing for your survival, unaware of whether or not you may live or die, to 55,000 screaming fans hinging on every moment of the Dodgers and Cubs as if their own survival was dependent on the outcome.

    One thing is for certain, they will be comforted and cheered by both fans and employees alike, for their bravery and courage on that terrifiying night.

    Oh, and Yasiel Puig will be their to greet them too. 

    "I'm excited to see them again and give them a hug," he said.

    In addition to Puig, the team has been excellent in their response to their two family members who survived the shooting. 

    Moore and Zambrana are just two of six total ball girls who protect fans from foul balls on the baselines throughout the season, but once the Dodgers heard they were affected by the tragedy, they immediately reached out to them to offer comfort and support. 

    According to Plaschke, the team sent out personalized get-well videos from players, autographed jerseys and team gear, even a handwritten letter from Dodgers' manager Dave Roberts.

    "They're part of our family," said Dodgers' chief marketing officer, Lon Rosen. "They're important to us, important to our players and fans. We're very excited that they can come back and participate on Sunday."

    "We’re not very high on the totem pole," Moore said. "We're only ball girls, some people don’t even know our names. But the support from the Dodgers has been overwhelming."

    Moore is excited to return to Dodger Stadium for the NLCS, and is expected to wear her No. 88 jersey, a number that is apropos considering the last time the Dodgers went to the World Series was in 1988.

    It will be their first time in front of a large crowd since the shooting occurred, but we have a feeling their bravery and courage, plus the adrenaline of the day, will get them through. 

    But at the end of the day, Plaschke said it best:

    "They are mourning over the bloodshed they witnessed, keenly thankful for the blessings they have been given and more excited than ever for October baseball and the eternal hope it holds for nine innings of life."