On Thursday night, Gordon Hayward returned to the ballpark where Danny Ainge and Brad Stevens brought him during his July 2 recruiting visit in Boston. Hayward threw out the first pitch in front of the Fenway Faithful and was greeted with a warm welcome.
Welcome to Boston, @gordonhayward! ☘️ pic.twitter.com/8RUhr49jup— Red Sox (@RedSox) September 28, 2017
It wasn’t the prettiest pitch. Hayward channeled his inner Henry Rowengartner (sans the underhand) and lofted one high in the air before it took a downward trajectory into Sox infielder Deven Marrero’s glove. The pitch may have been slow and outside of the strike zone, but at least Hayward didn’t throw it ten feet wide like Suns rookie Josh Jackson did.
Hayward was a two-sport recruit while in high school in Indiana, and was one of the top junior tennis players in the state. But after that pitch, it’s fair to conclude that the 6’8 forward won’t be pulling a Michael Jordan anytime soon.
With the Red Red Sox squeezing the new Celtics into their September plans, we can only hope that Kyrie Irving will get his chance before Mookie Betts and Co. begin their postseason run. Hayward was the second Celtic to toss one this month. Jayson Tatum did it on September 10.