MLB Denied Rangers’ Request to Have Dirk Nowitzki Throw Out First Pitch?
NBA Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki threw out the first pitch before a Ranges game in June, shortly after he led the Mavericks to the NBA championship. The Rangers won that game 8-1. Dirk’s toss wasn’t the best (watch video of it here), but the Rangers and their fans enjoyed having their local hero throw out a first pitch.
Texas liked Dirk so much that they apparently had him on a list of people they wanted to throw out the first pitch prior to one of their World Series games. MLB reportedly nixed the idea.
Sources told ESPNDallas.com that — with the NBA in the midst of a lockout that has spanned 111 days — at least some hesitation stems from the idea that MLB executives want to stand behind their basketball counterparts and have notified the Rangers that they can’t bestow first-pitch honors on an NBA player.
Major League Baseball insists that the NBA’s labor unrest had no impact on Nowitzki not being selected to throw out the first pitch.
“MLB absolutely denies that any part in selecting the first ball pitcher had anything to do with the current labor situation in the NBA,” MLB spokesman Pat Courtney said. “You want the club’s input in what makes sense for them and then we talk about what makes sense for the team and a good broad-base national appeal.
Hmm, so MLB says they want a person who makes sense for the team and has a good national appeal? Dirk is an extremely well known sports figure in North America. He’s a local star in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. What about the combination does not make sense? Why would MLB not allow him to throw out the first pitch? So far, they don’t have any good explanations. I’m not sure one exists.
Thanks to I am a GM for the heads up.