HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Some of the best moments in sports is when a hometown athlete comes home and a big crowd turns out as a welcoming party. That is exactly what happened for Tyler Herb as the Wiconisco native got the start for the Richmond Flying Squirrels when they visited the Senators on Tuesday night.
A charged crowd was on hand, ready to see the former Williams Valley Viking show off his stuff.
The Senators were gracious hosts to the Herb group, even giving Tyler a boisterous introduction.
"From Wiconisco, Pennsylvania, number 23 Tyler Herb" blared over the speakers.
As Herb took to the mound, he was nervous before this one -- the hometown area turning out, over 4,500 people in the stands. Herb brought the crowd to it's feet with a first inning strike out. His fans even donned some matching long hair locks.
After giving up two runs in the first, one of which was unearned, Herb settled down, striking out the side in the second. He went six plus, finishing with seven strikeouts on the night, while giving up just two earned runs.
Herb did suffer the loss as the Senators ruined the homecoming winning, 4-3. The result didn't dampen the spirit of Herb nation.
"Great guy was always a great student, he represents our area very well, and we wanted him to know how proud we are of him, so yea we grew our hair out just for tonight," said Dan Daub, who just happens to be the mayor of Tower City.
For the current crop of Williams Valley students, like Ben Ulsch, they were excited to see one of their heroes.
"It feels, yea, I just want to be exactly like him, it feels pretty cool," he said.
While the hometown crowd provided the energy, Herb was providing his parents with lots of nerves.
"Not knowing exactly what to expect with all the people being here, not knowing how he would react to it, because he really, except for high school, has never played at home so this is a little nerve racking," said Lori Herb, Tyler's mom.
His dad, Paul, was as proud as any father could be.
"He is doing things that I know I could never do, you just got to keep doing well and go out every day, put your work in and hopefully somebody notices you."
Someone is noticing Herb -- word around the clubhouse was Tyler won't be in Double-A for long.
Though, Herb wasn't focusing on his next promotion. He was just excited to be able to pitch in front of the hometown faithful.
"Regardless of how well or how bad I pitched, I knew this was going to be something special, something that I came here as a little kid played in the East-West game for legion, and it is definitely fun it is cool."