The other night while the Red Sox were playing the Washington Senators, John Kerry reported for duty in the WEEI broadcast booth to talk a little baseball with the Red Sox announcers.
When the discussion turned to Kerry throwing out the first (dirtball) pitch during a Red Sox/Yankees game in 2004, he repeated the story that he threw a lob because didn’t want to scare the Iraq War veteran who was to catch the ball.
“My pitch was not spectacular. It was funny. We had this young kid who had just come back from Afghanistan, or Iraq? Iraq. And he’s a young military guy. He was truly quaking. I mean, I went up to him beforehand and I was worried, you know, that anything I threw . . . so I sort of threw this thing easy and it went plunk. That’s the worst thing in the world.“
I was at that game on the eve of the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston. It was supposed to be a hero’s welcome, but Kerry was greeted by thunderous boos from the home crowd. It had to shake him. On the other hand, the young veteran he was throwing to had just returned from a tour in Iraq where I’m sure he saw things a lot scarier than Kerry’s limp-wristed toss.
The botched joke who is my senator never misses an opportunity to embarrass himself and the citizens of Massachusetts.