I scheduled my pitch for a game in August for which I already had purchased tickets. When the day arrived, I have to admit that I was a little nervous. I have played in a softball league for a couple years now, but throwing a baseball is different, of course. I pitched in high school, too, but that was half a lifetime ago for me. Mostly, I was worried about two things: bouncing the ball and possibly causing injury to the player catching it; and throwing it wildly to the backstop.
You probably won't be surprised to hear that there are about 5-10 first pitches before a game now. Between charitable partners, season ticket holders, and drawing winners like me, there was quite a line that night. One nice thing -- the stadium was only about half full due to a late-arriving crowd. When my turn came (I was last in line, I believe, and was slightly intimidated follow a 10 year old kid who hurled a perfect strike), I decided to go with accuracy over velocity. After they called my name, I stepped up to the mound and, with a two-seam grip, was able to "fire" a strike to the catcher (who, I believe, is usually the most recent AA call-up). Just like that, it was over. No embarrassment; no Rock Cats player writhing on the ground; no popped shoulder joint. With these pictures, I'm hoping that TwinsDaily's Parker Hageman can analyze my arm action and recommend some areas for improvement (thanks in advance, Parker!).
|Look at the follow-through|
|Terry Ryan, pictured here trying to sign me to a MiLB|
contract after watching me throw a ceremonial first pitch
strike. "Sweet Lord, we need arms," he said.