Dany Heatley loses opening pitch duel with 17-year old girl at AT&T Park

By Jon Swenson - Last updated: Tuesday, April 27, 2010 - Save & Share - One Comment

San Jose Sharks right wing Dany Heatley learned the first rule of Bay Area major league baseball Monday night at AT&T Park in San Francisco, always root for the Oakland Athletics. On the mound to throw out the opening pitch, Heatley watched as the young girl that preceeded him threw a high arcing strike. With the pressure on in front of 30,035 fans, Heatley fired a bounce pass to Barry Zito at home plate.

To add insult to injury, teammate Ryane Clowe added on the CSN television broadcast “I was impressed by Zito’s pickup.” The Sharks had Sunday off after ousting the Colorado Avalanche 4-2 in the Western Conference Quarterfinals, but returned to practice for the second round Monday. Heatley, Jed Ortmeyer and defenseman Niclas Wallin were given Monday off to recuperate from undisclosed lower body injuries.

The Giants went on to put a 5-1 hurting on the Philadelphia Phillies. Hat tip to the inestimable Puck Daddy for the video.

[Update] Sharks Settle In to Wait, Watch, Rest – Comcast Sportsnet California.

[Update2] Dany Heatley’s First Pitch, The Sharks forward threw out the first pitch at a Giants game – SJsharks.com.

“I’d never thrown out a first pitch before and it was a thrill,” Heatley said. “But now I’d love to take batting practice.”

Heatley may have grown up in Canada where hockey is the national sport, but it never stopped him from following baseball. “Definitely I’m a fan,” Heatley said. “I’m from Canada, but I’ve been in the States a lot. I love watching games and love being at the park.”

Heatley even attended a Giants game at their previous stadium, Candlestick Park, long before he moved to the Bay Area. “We were just in California,” Heatley said of his visit to the Giants old home. “We were on a family vacation and ended up at a game.”

[Update3] In other baseball-Shark related news, the San Jose Mercury News featured a Sunday article/photo feature on the city of San Jose’s efforts to prepare downtown for a possible Athletics ballpark. A 2-phase traffic project would create a streamlined thoroughfare between I-880 and the new arena/HP Pavilion. It would link Coleman Avenue and Julian Street, and allow fans an easier access to I-880 and 101 to the north.

According to the Mercury News, the city purchased one of four plots for phase one of the project, and made offers on three others. With regards to land needed for the second phase, the city also purchased one of four plots. San Jose spent $24.4 million on land for the proposed ballpark, less than half of what is needed for the 14 acre location. There is also the possibility the city could invoke eminent domain to seize properties needed for the project.

Mercury News reporter Scott Herhold parses the traffic congestion that would follow lengthy construction, and adds more details of the financial costs that could delay the second phase of the proposed “Autumn Street connector”. With 2 competing sports arenas in the planning stages for the Earthquakes near the airport, and the 49′ers near Great America in Santa Clara, voters could see a glut of proposed sports complexes on the ballot in the near future. Voters would also have to weigh the city’s financial burden during an extraordinaryly tough fiscal crisis.

That being said, the impact the new thoroughfare and stadium would have on downtown would be similar to the massive revitalization efforts of the 1990′s. It would provide jobs, add to the “big city status” city leaders have been striving for, and it would make San Jose more of a destination. It could also connect penninsula and east bay baseball fans with those in the south bay for a very successful box office draw. Right now fans in the penninsula are hampered by almost untenable east bay traffic levels, and BART trains leading to Oakland currently cut off in Fremont.

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One Response to “Dany Heatley loses opening pitch duel with 17-year old girl at AT&T Park”

Pingback from Hockey Notes – 9/10 | SHARKSPAGE
Time September 10, 2010 at 11:12 AM

[...] lousy pitcher but a great hockey player, continues the theme from last season and included his epic first pitch fail at a Giants game. // Posted in San Jose Sharks • • Top Of [...]