How Awkward Was Muhammad Ali's First Pitch Last Night?

Categories: Sports
via You Tube
Ali and Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria.
On the opening night of the Marlins new ballpark, a lot of things went right: Parking wasn't a catastrophe. The weather was South Florida perfection. On national TV, the new ballpark looked damned gorgeous -- lime green facades, swimming polls and all. And in the best news of the night, no Marlins went yard, so baseball fans were spared exposure to the water-belching, Marlins-shaped eye-stabber in left.

But let's talk about that first pitch. Bringing out Muhammad Ali, a legend with a strong Miami tie, in theory must have seemed like a great idea. In practice? Oy, was that awkward.

Within a few minutes of Ali emerging in a golf cart from an outfield tunnel with less-than-universally beloved Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria, it was evident that the move might be tough to pull off.

As the cart trundled slowly across the outfield grass, Loria grinned manically and seemed to grip Ali's trembling arms in an ever-more-desperate grasp. The crowd quickly fell into uncomfortable silence.

The announcer tried to restart some enthusiasm with an "Ali, Ali!" chant, but then the cart reached the infield and silence again descended as Hanley Ramirez tried to wedge a ball into Ali's shaking hand.

Ali's an American icon, and it's always great to see the 70-year-old in public and greeted by a cheering crowd. But this? Deadspin nailed how many felt watching the moment: it was tough to feel celebratory about "the sad, shameless sight of Loria trotting out Ali's disease-ravaged body for a forced on-field ceremony."

[via Deadspin]

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1380 NW 6th St., Miami, FL

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20 comments
Guilty
Guilty

Jeffrey Loria took the $3 BILLION Carlos Alvarez and that schmuck Manny Diaz got for him and he bought a $30 Mil oceanfront estate in NEW YORK. Yup. Loria was in the NY papers as buying the property in NEW YORK.

Idiot elected officials and that chump George Burgess gave away our money.

MiamiMe
MiamiMe

The only way I would like to see Pitbull out there is if someone throws a pitch at his no-talent head and shuts him up...

Payton_vege
Payton_vege

Amazing write-up! This could aid plenty of people find out more about this particular issue. Are you keen to integrate video clips coupled with these? It would absolutely help out. Your conclusion was spot on and thanks to you; I probably won’t have to describe everything to my pals. I can simply direct them here!

Jackmahogoff
Jackmahogoff

Bad choices ... National Anthem by Pitbull, Flo Rida or Gloria. First pitch by the great coach and Miami icon Don Shula.

Voters must remember
Voters must remember

No voter should forget the dimwit Bruno Barrerio and the ethics challenged Marc Sarnoff voted to approve the $3 Bil scam. Barrerio made the Motion. Wait until Norman Braman gets his hands on those two sh*theads necks?

$3 BILLION minimum
$3 BILLION minimum

$3 BILLION. The taxpayers are forced to pay $3 Billion over the next 40 years. Probably much more as the high interest bonds get re-financed. Not only do the taxpayers have to pay for the stadium BUT they also must pay for the garage.Disgraced ex-mayor Manny Diaz and recalled out on his butt Carlos Alvarez probably got bribed.

Licit
Licit

And shameless manny Diaz made an appearance atnthe ribbon cutting. Sad

Drake Mallard
Drake Mallard

Every year, millions of taxpayer dollars are poured into stadiums,
hockey rinks, baseball parks, and other arenas in order to attract and retain 
professional sports teams in big cities. Often the money isspent by 
the cities after a team "threatens" to leave the city.When that happens, of course, the local news media act as thewilling 
accomplices of the billionaires who own the teams.When city andstate governments build facilities for sports organizations which areowned by billionaires, and raise taxes as a result, it is clearly anabuse of power. 


"it time for more recalls and jail time ™

what a waste of payer money again

David Samson  told a local business council that he thinks Miamians are stupid. Samson talked with WSVN to clarify his remarks. Don't worry guys, he doesn't think Miamians are especially stupid. He wants to clarify that he thinks Americans are just stupid and lazy in general

Julezz
Julezz

Seeing Muhammad Ali in public the last 15 years has been a cringe worthy affair. So what?! This is Muhammad freakin' Ali! The Greatest! The People's Champion! Are we supposed to shun him and keep him in hiding because he's sick and frail? He makes his own decisions, we should be thankful he graced our city for Opening Night in Marlins Park. I don't like Loria as much as the next guy, but he shouldn't get any flack for this.

Jjdds
Jjdds

Both Ali and Feliciano were poor choices. The ballpark is here now and is quite beautiful. No matter how you feel about the funding you might as well enjoy it. Your going to pay for it one way or the other, you can be mad or happy. While I didn't support the funding I prefer to go forward and be happy and enjoy the new venue.

Anonymouse
Anonymouse

so glad i'm not the only one who feels this way. i cringed. my father cringed. it was awful. after bilking miami residents out of millions of tax dollars, the marlins owner really does have his head up his ass.

Henry Flagler III
Henry Flagler III

I look forward to more nights at Carlos Alvarez Memorial Stadium.  

F_caballe
F_caballe

The Miami New Times is always against the Marlins. Get over it !!!.Leave Loria and Samson alone for gods sake and enjoy the beatiful park.

Fat Hand
Fat Hand

The Ali thing was a bit awkward, I think partly because the golf cart driving him in from center was moving so damn slow, but overall it was a great opening night (the game itself notwithstanding). The ballpark is amazing and it's going to be a great place to watch a game. Even the home run statute in center (which the New Times can't quite get past for some reason) looks great. It's over the top and crazy and all, but it sure as hell isn't boring. Nothing at the new park is boring. Great park, great night.

Neil's Ghost
Neil's Ghost

Marlins owner the Canadian Jeff Loria and his midget sidekick David Samson are disgusting. They scammed the idiot elected officials of Miami into diverting over $3 BILLION of the taxpayers money to their privately owned business. Disgraced County Mayor Carlos Alvarez was recalled by 88% of the voters. Disgraced ex-Mayor Manny Diaz left office under the cloud of TWO SEC investigations.$3 BILLION stolen from the taxpayers.Best post EVER!Fuck Loria the Canadian and his pole smoking midget Samson.

Loria the scammer
Loria the scammer

Marlins owner the Canadian Jeff Loria and his midget sidekick David Samson are disgusting. They scammed the idiot elected officials of Miami into diverting over $3 BILLION of the taxpayers money to their privately owned business. Disgraced County Mayor Carlos Alvarez was recalled by 88% of the voters. Disgraced ex-Mayor Manny Diaz left office under the cloud of TWO SEC investigations.

$3 BILLION stolen from the taxpayers.

Ethan Shapiro
Ethan Shapiro

I was there and it was a total flop.  As to why they didn't find someone who could actually throw a baseball throw the first pitch is idiotic.  Combine the Ali incident with the staged surprising of a family who's loved one is far away stationed in Afghanistan and it all felt very contrived.  Hopefully Emilio Estefan is the one who set up these idiotic moves and not some Marlins official.  There are so many things they could have done to bridge the history of the Marlins and celebrate their rebirth.  For example, instead of starting out with a video of girl holding a new Marlins flag while riding on a boat, start with an old Marlins flag being taken down from Joe Robbie Stadium, driven/flown all the way to the new stadium and pass the torch so to speak with the new logo/flag.  It just seemed that the Ali and staged surprising were arranged by a rookie.

John Paul Stevens
John Paul Stevens

But its not over.  The city must now pay $2.4 billion over the 40 year life of the bonds.  But feel free to stick your head in the sand if thats where you feel most comfortable.   

Drake Mallard
Drake Mallard

 Welcome to the American dream--a billionaire using public fundsto constructa private playgroundfor the rich and powerful.

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