Many baseball teams offer special guests, MVP’s, former players, or just choosing someone out of the stands to throw out the ceremonial first pitch before a baseball game. Below are several different examples of a first pitch that we’ve been part of that you can incorporate into your game production. Before the National Anthem: Teams
Many baseball teams offer special guests, MVP’s, former players, or just choosing someone out of the stands to throw out the ceremonial first pitch before a baseball game. Below are several different examples of a first pitch that we’ve been part of that you can incorporate into your game production.
Before the National Anthem:
Teams off the field:
This is the simplest way to go about doing it if you’re in professional or college baseball. Since most high schools typically have teams warming up with infield practice, then move right into the coaches and umpires meeting, it’s harder to pull off without prior planning.
The first pitch should be done after the grounds crew is finished preparing the mound and home plate areas, and before the umpires take the field.
Teams on the field:
Introduce both teams, either full teams or starting line-ups. After the teams are lined up on their foul lines, conduct the ceremonial first pitch. You can also perform the National Anthem right after the first pitch so that the honoree can enjoy a little more time on the field.
Teams on the field, defense in position:
Introduce both teams, with the home team placing their starting line-up in position on the field. After announcing the final player, the person throwing out the ceremonial first pitch will go to the pitcher’s mound and throw the first pitch to the catcher at home plate. After the pitch, the catcher carries the ball out to the mound to present it to the person throwing out the first pitch. The pitcher, catcher and the ceremonial pitcher remain on the mound for the National Anthem.
After the National Anthem:
Teams off the field:
Some teams will have the National Anthem performed long before the teams are announced. When this happens and you still have a ceremonial first pitch, you can conduct the first pitch in similar fashion to above. Wait until the field is ready, and then perform the first pitch. After the first pitch is over, the home team can then take the field or the umpires and coaches can have their meetings. In some leagues, once the umpires take the field you cannot perform the first pitch. Verify with your league prior to conducting the first pitch in this manner.
Teams on the field:
Once a team has taken the field, you can still have the first pitch. After the players take their positions, the announcer begins introducing the ceremonial first pitch. The home team should know this is coming and the starting pitcher will wait at the mound until the ceremony is complete.
- If the person throwing out the first pitch doesn’t quite have the arm to get it to home plate from the pitchers mound (read, young), have them move up a little, unless they don’t want to. It’s cute to see a three or four year old throw the ball in and then catcher waits for it to come to the plate. Catchers are usually fairly ready for the ball to go anywhere.
- Allow the person throwing out the first pitch to warm-up before the game. Whether it’s in foul territory in front of the dugout, in the bullpen, batting cage or other enclosed area, this will give the person throwing out the first pitch a better chance of being accurate. The whole point is to celebrate the person throwing the pitch and not to attempt to embarrass them.
- If you are using the first pitch as a marriage proposal, typically the bride-to-be should be the the one throwing out the first pitch, with the groom-to-be as the catcher. This is also a good method to use as a homecoming reveal as well. The person to be surprised should throw out the pitch, with the person they’re being reunited with catching the ball.
- Don’t expect to have the umpire supply the balls for the ceremonial first pitch. Bring the balls with you and make sure all those who are supposed to throw out a first pitch have a baseball before they take the mound.