Alex Rodriguez will receive his 3,000th hit ball from Zack Hample

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It took just more than two weeks, but New York Yankees designated hitter Alex Rodriguez will finally receive his 3,000th-hit ball. The Yankees reached a deal with Zack Hample, the notorious fan who caught the ball. Hample initially told the team he was keeping the milestone souvenir. 

So, what did it cost the club to get the ball back? Quite a bit, it appears.

But wait, there's more.

On top of that, it appears Hample will present A-Rod with the ball at a news conference Friday. It's also probably not a coincidence that the Yankees mentioned Hample's Twitter feed in both of their posts about the ball. 

(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

Hample is somewhat of a celebrity in the baseball world for his penchant for snagging baseballs. He literally wrote the book on the subject. Catching A-Rod's 3,000th-hit ball has only increased his status in recent weeks.

Not surprisingly, he's using that for all it's worth. Hample will receive a ton of perks from the Yankees for catching the ball, and will even be part of a news conference. 

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We have to give credit where it's due, though. He got the Yanks to donate a large amount of money to charity, and that's a good thing. So, yes, he's using the situation to boost his own profile, but at least he's doing something positive in the process.

For Rodriguez, this probably comes as a relief. Things looked bleak for a while, but he will end up with the ball. It's a significant achievement, and it's no surprise why he wants to have it. He'll have to go through the theatrics of a news conference, but that's a small price to pay in this case. 

And so, this is how our story of unlikeable heroes comes to an end. Everyone winds up happy. Hample is happy, A-Rod is happy and the Yankees are happy. What a great day to be a fan of any of them!

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Chris Cwik is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at christophercwik@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik

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