The ceremonial first pitch is a sacred part of baseball.
Some lucky person?usually a celebrity with ties to the home team?steps up to the mound, throws a pitch and goes on with their day.
Look at Simone Biles. The gymnastics star casually did a backflip (in jeans!) before throwing the first pitch prior to Game 2 of the 2019 World Series between the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals.
Biles wasn’t the first gymnast to use her acrobatic skills on the mound, though.
Nastia Liukin’s Aerial First Pitch
The Los Angeles Angels were set to square off against the Tampa Bay Rays in 2017. Former Olympic gymnast Nastia Liukin walks onto the field after getting loose in the bullpen.
The 2008 Olympic gold medalist is set to throw the first pitch to Angels first baseman Albert Pujols (who still plays in Los Angeles to this day).
Liukin winds up, does an aerial, lands flawlessly and throws a dart. The crowd awes in amazement. I was in awe watching my computer screen.
In 2019, Liukin was back at it again throwing out the first pitch at a St. Louis Cardinals game. It was just as impressive as the first time.
It’s always fun when someone adds a wrinkle to their first pitch or throws one so hilariously bad you can’t stop watching (what’s up, 50 Cent?).
If I were Liukin, I would consider a second career as a MLB pitching coach. Arm angles and hiding the ball are all the talk these days. Imagine if a pitcher flipped, spun and tossed a 97-mph heater. We’re talking about a perennial Cy Young candidate.
I vote for only Olympian gymnasts and 50 Cent to throw out first pitches. They sure would be entertaining.