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Today in Postseason History: President Bush's iconic first pitch at Game 3 of the '01 World Series

Today in Postseason History: Pres. Bush's first pitch

On Oct. 30, 2001 -- just 49 days after the 9/11 attacks -- President George W. Bush took the mound at Yankee Stadium to throw out the ceremonial first pitch before Game 3 of the World Series.

President Bush was wearing an FDNY pullover as he stood tall on the mound and gave a thumbs-up sign as the roaring crowd chanted, "U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!"


"I had never had such an adrenaline rush as when I finally made it to the mound. I was saying to the crowd, 'I'm with you, the country's with you' ... And I wound up and fired the pitch. I've been to conventions and rallies and speeches: I've never felt anything so powerful and emotions so strong, and the collective will of the crowd so evident."

It was Yankees captain Derek Jeter who stopped by to take some swings in the cage and check in on President Bush, who was warming up beneath Yankee Stadium. Jeter urged the leader of the free world to stand on the rubber rather than in front of the mound, joking that the fans would boo him if he didn't. 

President Bush took Jeter's advice and threw a strike to backup catcher Todd Greene:


It was just the second time in history that a sitting president threw out the first pitch for a World Series game (President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 was the only other such instance). Roger Clemens allowed only one run on three hits over seven innings before handing the ball off to Mariano Rivera, who slammed the door shut with a two-inning save.

Five days later, Luis Gonzalez's walk-off single in the ninth inning of Game 7 lifted the D-backs to their first World Series title.


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