Ben Hartman, a member of the 2016 Iowa Central baseball team, will have something that Ken Griffey Jr., Tony Gwynn, and decades of Cubs and Red Sox players could never capture - a World Series ring.
Hartman did not put together a hall of fame playing career like Griffey and Gwynn. However, he did chase his dream of working on a major league grounds crew, something that the World Series champion Houston Astros will reward him and his coworkers for in an April ceremony.
A 2017 graduate of the Iowa Central turf grass program, Hartman earned an internship with the Astros and finished the last three months of the major league season, including the playoffs, with the club.
"My boss was impressed with the experience I had at Iowa Central and knew that he could trust me with whatever task I was given," said Hartman. Those tasks ranged from mowing and dirt work to even painting logos on the field for the ALDS, ALCS, and World Series.
Hartman will again work for the Astros in 2018 and has also earned a job at a Houston area golf course.