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J.J. McCarthy throws horrendous first pitch at Twins game

In the words of Bob Uecker, the pitch was just Go outside a little.

Vikings first-round draft pick J.J. McCarthy threw out the first pitch before the Twins-Rays game at Target Field on Tuesday, making it clear his career is in football, not baseball.

Minnesota’s rookie quarterback threw the ceremonial first pitch, sending it flying into the backstop far left of the catcher, eliciting groans from the crowd watching from the stands.

While this pitch may not have been as bad as 50 Cent’s infamous first pitch at Citi Field on May 28, 2014, it was still far from good.

McCarthy swiftly exited the field, hopping around as the stadium organ played in the background.

McCarthy was selected 10th overall by the Vikings in this year’s NFL Draft after helping lead Michigan to a national title earlier this year.


Minnesota Vikings first round draft pick JJ McCarthy throws the ceremonial first pitch before a baseball game between the Tampa Bay Rays and Minnesota Twins, Tuesday, June 18, 2024, in Minneapolis. AP

JJ McCarthy of the Minnesota Vikings watches before start of a game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Minnesota Twins at Target Field on June 18, 2024 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
JJ McCarthy of the Minnesota Vikings watches before start of a game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Minnesota Twins at Target Field on June 18, 2024 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Getty Images

McCarthy was a first-round draft pick, but former Jets point guard Sam Darnold is expected to enter training camp this year as the No. 1 quarterback.

Still, head coach Kevin O’Connell told reporters last week that he wanted to create a “competitive situation” between Darnold and McCarthy before training camp begins.

“I haven’t had to do a depth chart or anything like that,” O’Connell told ESPN, “but I would say Sam is a player that I would expect to see based on how he’s performed this spring and what his career has been like and his journey as a quarterback and what he’s done since he’s come in.” [hitting] Take action now and make the most of the competitive situation.”

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