The many faces of Gary Busey: Rays ceremonial first pitcher
Before their matchup with the visiting Blue Jays on Friday night, the Rays welcomed a very special guest to Tropicana Field: actor Gary Busey.
Busey channeled his inner Chet Steadman, throwing tonight's ceremonial first pitch. He's in the Tampa Bay area for the 11th annual Sunscreen Film Festival, held this weekend in St. Petersburg. Busey, who's appeared in over 150 films, is promoting his latest, "Candiland."
Prior to taking the mound, Busey posed for a photo with Rays catcher Curt Casali:
And then took it all in atop the mound:
Judging by some of these photos, Busey had a really good time during his visit (as anybody would when wearing an official MLB jersey over a Hawaiian shirt):
MLB.com's George Pappas was able to ask Busey a few questions, and his answers were pretty great. Some highlights, per Busey's replies:
Busey says he was a fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers and the Yankees growing up.
His two favorite roles? A high school quarterback in a made-for-TV movie called "Blood Sport" and, of course, Chet Steadman in the 1993 classic "Rookie of the Year" -- a role, by the way, that still results in some people referring to him as 'The Rocket' to this day.
For "Rookie of the Year" Busey was trained by former White Sox pitcher Tim Stoddard:
So, would Steadman have made the Hall of Fame had he been a real player?
In a fun twist for "Point Break" fans (the original version, mind you), Busey's visit to the Trop came on the very same day a film titled "Keanu" hit theaters.
To make the timing of all of this even more perfect, "Keanu" features the real Keanu Reeves providing the voice of the cat around which the film is centered.