Friday, April 18, 2008

McNair Throws out First Pitch—Again

BALTIMORE (AP)—Steve McNair’s career with the Baltimore Ravens ended precisely as it started.

McNair threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Camden Yards on Friday night, one day after the quarterback ended his 13-year NFL career. Less than two years earlier, he was involved in the same ceremony—just hours after signing a new contract with the Ravens.

“I appreciate it,” McNair said. “It shows you how the city of Baltimore is loyal to the people who come here.”

Minutes before the Orioles faced the New York Yankees, McNair signed autographs for dozens of fans. Then, wearing a black Orioles jersey with his name and the No. 9 on the back, he went to the mound and threw a perfect strike to Brandon Fahey.

As McNair walked off the mound, New York’s Alex Rodriguez walked over, shook his hand and said, “I enjoyed watching you.”

McNair was delighted with the gesture.

“It makes me feel so proud of what I do,” he said.

McNair spent only two seasons in Baltimore, but it was long enough to appreciate the fans of Baltimore.

“They hate you when you’re an opposing player and come in,” McNair said. “You never realize how well-mannered and genuine they are until you come in. When I got inside the situation, I was like, ‘Wow.’ The fans embraced me with open arms. I felt like I was home again.”

Ravens coach John Harbaugh will throw out the first pitch at Sunday’s game.


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