Well-known faces in the swimming community are making appearances on the diamond this week, with a pair of swimming celebs throwing out first pitches at Major League Baseball games.
Sunday afternoon, Olympic medalist Katie Hoff threw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Tampa Bay Rays in their game against the New York Yankees.
Hoff is slated to make the first major step of her comeback this week as she competes at the Mesa Grand Prix. But in spite of a first pitch and a big-time swim meet, Hoff will likely remember this week for something else.
After throwing out that opening pitch, Hoff was surprised by her boyfriend Todd Anderson, who was waiting for her at home plate with a pressing question. Anderson proposed to the multi-time Olympic medalist, and Hoff said yes. (You find USA Today’s coverage of the proceedings here.)
ICYMI, @USA_Swimming Olympic medalist Katie Hoff (@KHoff09) threw out the #Rays ceremonial first pitch and said YES: pic.twitter.com/IuNFyhi2Vf
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) April 20, 2014
On Tuesday on the other side of the country, California Golden Bears men’s head swimming coach David Durden will warm up his arm, tossing out the opening pitch for the Oakland Athletics in their game against the Texas Rangers. Durden will represent the entire Cal men’s swimming and diving program, which won its third NCAA title in four years last month.
There’s certainly some symbolism there, given the A’s are facing Texas on Tuesday. Cal beat the Texas Longhorns for that NCAA title just as they did in 2011 and 2012, and the year before that, Texas topped the Bears for the NCAA crown. That’s prompted us at SwimSwam to ask the question of if college swimming now has its new iconic team rivalry, a possibility the Oakland Athletics certainly seem to be picking up on.