Ron Ashmore's dream of winning a million dollars with three pitches tonight fell $990,000 short.
However, Ashmore still pronounced himself satisfied with the experience after going 0-for-3 in trying to hit, from the pitcher's mound, a 12-inch target set up at home plate at the Kansas City Royals' stadium.
Ashmore, 51, had had his name randomly drawn from 120,000 entries in a sweepstakes sponsored by Hostess (the snack-cake company). If the Denver, N.C. resident threw all three balls through the target -- which was about as big as a dinner plate -- he would win a million dollars.
One out of three would have won $25,000. Two out of three would have won $50,000. Ashburn still received a consolation prize of $10,000 as the sweepstakes winner. (The contestant in 2009 in this same contest also went 0-for-3. Hostess might want to consider widening that hole a little).
"My first two pitches missed by a good bit," Ashmore said. "The first one was low and right. The second one was a little higher, and still at least a foot to the right. But the third one felt really good. I thought it was going to go through the hole, but it missed by about three inches to the left."
Those three inches cost Ashmore $15,000.
Ashmore threw the pitches shortly before the Royals' game tonight. He also got a free trip to Kansas City with his wife, Sharon, and $1,000 in spending money for the trip. "So it's all good," he said.