Presidential Pitch

President Taft at the ball park 13 aug 1912

Taft at the ball park, 1912

With opening day approaching, the Library of Congress Blog took a quick look at President Taft, who was the first President to throw out the ceremonial first pitch to start the season, in 1910 and 1911. Taft was the first president to “embrace and support the sport” (though there are stories that Abe Lincoln was playing ball when he learned of his nomination for President). (No information on what position he played, but I would guess pitcher or first base.)

In 1910, opening day, the Senators beat the Nationals beat the Athletics, 3-0, behind a no-hitter by Walter Johnson, and in 1911 they beat Boston 8-5, so Taft was 2-0 in opening games. This is a nice little write up. Taft apparently saw quite a bit of baseball when he was President.

president grover cleveland

Grover Cleveland, the President

President Grover Cleveland, on the other hand, was all work. Cap Anson once visited him at the white house and invited him to a game, to which Cleveland replied, “What do you imagine the American people would think of me if I wasted my time going to the ball game?”

Grover Cleveland Alexander was born during the administration of President Grover Cleveland. In Grover Cleveland Alexander’s entry in the Internet Movie Database, it points out that he was named for one President, and portrayed by a second President (Reagan) in the film biography The Winning Team (1952). He was also a pretty good pitcher, but we’ll go into that some other day.

Lastly, I haven’t seen any stories about whether Obama will be tossing the first pitch this season. I’ll keep looking, though.

President throws pitch, greets children at Nationals game






2 thoughts on “Presidential Pitch

    • your source beats my source. I blame congress!
      Sounds like it *should* have been a no-hitter. Perhaps that’s it?
      In any case, thanks for setting the record straight.

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