It’s Opening Day

And I remember being at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore 30 years ago watching President Reagan throw  out the first pitch. Terry Dolan, Leif Noren and I were sitting right behind home plate.

It was a beautiful Spring day. Blue skies, temperature perfect for baseball.

Ronald_Reagan_throws_out_the_opening_pitch_at_a_Chicago_Cubs_baseball_game

President Reagan was along the third base line and Rick Dempsey was the Orioles catcher. He thought Reagan was going to throw a little pitter patter pitch and squatted down about 20 feet away.

Reagan waved him back and Dempsey squatted. Reagan waved him back a second time and  Dempsey squatted. Then a third time and finally it was nearly 60 feet, 6 inches.

Reagan leaned back and fired a fastball into Dempsey’s mitt. We heard the “thwack” of Dempsey’s glove from our seats.

Fifty thousand people went nuts.

The Gipper was grinning from ear to ear.

One of my most treasured memories.

(Updated on April 7, 2014)