Wall serious about making amends for first-pitch fiasco

Wall serious about making amends for first-pitch fiasco
April 11, 2013, 12:45 pm
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John Wall, Bradley Beal practice their pitches

Now that John Wall has improved his jump shot, he’s got one more goal before the Wizards’ season ends: Throw out the first pitch at a Nationals game without embarrassing himself again.

Wall practiced his throwing motion with teammates after a light practice Thursday morning. Later, the Nationals play the Chicago White Sox  at 7:05 p.m. ET.

A point guard known for his blinding end-to-end speed, Wall is taking a different approach with baseball. 

“I’m just going to lob it,” Wall said of his goal his second time around. “Simple.”

A.J. Price, Bradley Beal and Kevin Seraphin took part in making throws to a target at the Wizards’ practice facility, hurling pitches from a makeshift mound.

Seraphin, a 6-9 forward, was so off-target that his throw that it hit the backboard.

“Anything he does tonight will be an improvement,” Wizards coach Randy Wittman said of Wall. “It cannot be worse.”

In the last two months of the regular season, Wall’s play has elevated the Wizards and gives them hope for the future. They had a nine-game home winning streak until a 103-98 loss to the Miami Heat on Wednesday.

But even though he’s a great athlete, Wall knows that he shouldn't confuse himself with Nationals ace Stephen Strasburg.

“I tried to throw a bullet like I was really Strasburg or somebody and it didn't work,” he said.

Wall wanted a do-over after his throw went straight into the ground and didn't come anywhere near home plate. It was as bad, if not worse, than the throw by former Wizards forward Caron Butler a few years prior. He couldn't get the ball to the plate. 

“I just want to make sure I get it to the mound. As long as I don’t hit the dirt, I’m cool. I don’t want it to be like I did last time,” Wall said. “Everybody thinks it’s easy. … It’s just fun to do. Something to do for your city. It’s also important to the Nationals, but you also want to do a good job when you’re out there.”