Bush Throws First Pitch at New Stadium in Washington
President Bush threw the ceremonial first pitch at the new baseball stadium in Washington Sunday night to a mixture of both cheers and boos.
This was the second time Bush has thrown the first pitch in Washington and sixth time overall, reported the Star Tribune. He threw out the first pitch in 2005 — mostly to cheers — when baseball returned to the city after more than three decades.
The Washington Nationals opened their new ballpark a day ahead of most other teams, who will open their season Monday, reported the New York Times.
Bush, who was the former Texas Rangers owner, threw the first pitch high and to the third-base side of the plate to Nationals manager Manny Acta.
It wasn't surprising that Bush's pitch was high, just as it was in 2005, reported the Star Tribune. People tend to have long memories when the ball is bounced to home plate, so Bush made time this week to hurl some practice pitches in his backyard — the South Lawn of the White House.
"I didn't want to bounce it, that's for certain," Bush later told ESPN announcers Jon Miller and Joe Morgan. "That's why I came in with high heat."
The new $611 million ballpark recieved a sellout crowd of about 41,000 in the Nationals first game of the season against the Atlanta Braves. Those in the upper deck of the ballpark could see the Capitol and the Washington Monument.
Bush waved twice quickly as he strode to the mound at Nationals Park, reported the Star Tribune. He wasted little time before throwing the pitch. He acknowledged the crowd one more time by raising his hand as he left the field, again hearing applause and boos.