WASHINGTON (WITI/AP) — A different kind of ceremonial first pitch! An Army veteran wounded in Iraq made a unique ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 of the NL Division Series, crawling toward the mound and then lobbing the baseball as if it were a grenade.
This first pitch was delivered by Retired U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Brian Keaton.
The crowd cheered loudly before San Francisco played Washington this past Saturday, October 4th.
According to the Nationals, Keaton served in the Army for more than 20 years — supported by his wife and their five children.
He was wounded after a bomb exploded in Iraq, and he spent three-and-a-half years at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center recovering from a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Drawing from his love of the game, doctors had Keaton sort baseball cards to improve his brain function.
His first public outing was a trip to Nationals Park as part of an in-game military salute.
Keaton says the unwavering support of his family, his faith and his love of baseball led him to this day.
Now, Keaton says he wants to pay forward the support he’s received, by working to help other military families.