The Renaissance Fan’s Best First Pitches Collection

Throwing out the first pitch at a baseball game is both an honor and a challenge. What makes the ceremonial first pitch unique is that the opportunity can be extended to anyone from a little kid up to a sitting US President. But unlike other ceremonial events, when throwing out a first pitch you need to perform. Putting the ball across the plate (or really just close to it) from 60 feet and 6 inches in front of 40,000 people on your first try is no easy feat. And what mat appear to be a simple task has humbled many that have attempted it. But while some have failed spectacularly, others have shined bright, exposing fan’s to a talent few knew they possessed. We have scoured the internet, and these are The Renaissance Fan’s best first pitches:

#5 Colin Kaepernick Brings the Heat

The ceremonial first pitch is supposed to be a breezy light-hearted affair most of the time. Apparently nobody told that to San Francisco 49er’s quarterback Colin Kaepernick because he dials it up to 11 for his pitch. The 87 mph tailing fastball seems to take everyone by surprise and if not for a nice snag might have plunked the cameraman. He knows it too! Should we be super impressed that a guy paid to throw something is also pretty good at throwing a different thing? Probably not (he could have played baseball professionally too), but you have to respect the heat and one of the fastest first pitches of all time:

#4 Shin Soo-ji Flips Out

If you are even a casual observer of sports highlights there is a good chance you’ve seen this one before. If not, prepare to be befuddled by the contorting first pitch of South Korean gymnast Shin Soo-ji. She certainly blows some minds in the dugout.The gimmicky flips have been done, several times, but this move works because it actually leads into a pitching motion (unlike some of the others linked here that are a flip and then a pitch):

#3 Tom Willis Defies All Odds

Tom Willis is not a celebrity, but maybe he should be. Tom was born without legs, but he has been touring around the country throwing out first pitches to raise awareness about differently abled people. It’s a remarkable story, and while it’s a little long, this clip does an excellent job summarizing this man’s truly unique accomplishments:

#2 Max Ashton Finds the Zone

Here’s another in the “remarkable and inspirational” file. Max Ashton, a young man with blindness since birth, throwing a perfect strike. Like Tom above, Max is a great testament to the human spirit and it’s fantastic that baseball creates moments like these:

#1 George W. Bush Delivers

Look, people have strong and mixed feelings about George W. Bush and his legacy, and we will leave those discussions for another site. But in the 2001 World Series in New York City just over a month after the September 11th terrorist attacks, the nation needed to see a strike from the Commander in Chief. And the man delivered. It’s one of the more powerful moments in the intersection of sports and the (very) real world. Even though it didn’t happen in a game, it may be one of the most important pitches ever thrown:

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