There have been a lot of first pitches over the years, most of them awful. For a country of men and women raised on baseball, our celebrities are surprisingly terrible at throwing the actual baseball. Maybe the pressure of throwing a competent pitch is too much for most people. I have a feeling a lot of them try too hard to aim it instead of just rearing back and letting it fly. It’s just a game of catch, 50 Cent. Surely if you can handle being peppered with bullets you won’t sweat peppering the strike zone.
Though most first pitches are embarrassingly bad, looking at you Barack Obama and Nolan Ryan (no, seriously), some of our most famous politicians and celebrities proved themselves competent ceremonial hurlers. We have no further to look than the game’s most famous first pitch of all time, from our former Commander in Chief, George W. Bush in Yankee Stadium, after the September 11th attacks.
Recent Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey also fired a strike for his first pitch effort. If there was anyone who took it nice and easy on the mound, it was definitely Wooderson. The only other celebrity to really nail the strike zone was Snoop Dogg of all people, though the rapper is an avid Dodgers fan so apparently he knew what he was doing, unlike multiple professional athletes. Michael Jordan, for example, further proved with his first pitch that he should have never, ever, EVER stepped onto a baseball diamond. Bill Clinton, meanwhile, did a hell of a job painting the corner, though no one should be surprised that Clinton’s game plan was to sneak one by ’em. Also, props to Justice Sonia Sotomayor for touching the corner.
Essentially what this chart boils down to is that anyone who had a worse first pitch than Justin Bieber should be absolutely ashamed of themselves. Looking at you Michael Jordan, Nolan Ryan, John Wall, 50 Cent and (ugh) Barack Obama. That group was also bested by a house cat and Avril Lavigne, or in other words, two Canadians and a fucking animal.
[via The Washington Post]