City News Service
The San Diego Padres will become the first of nine Major League Baseball teams to mark the centennial of Ronald Reagan's birth at Monday night's game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Petco Park.
The Ronald Reagan 100 — Major League Baseball Tribute will include a video tribute to Reagan, a ceremonial first pitch being thrown by Austin Dillon, a co-chair of the Reagan Centennial National Youth Committee and NASCAR driver, and country singer Tim Dugger singing the national anthem. Dugger is a member of the Reagan Centennial National Youth Committee.
"The fact that nine of the 30 Major League Baseball teams have chosen to honor President Reagan in a special way during this historic centennial year shows that his legacy is alive and well today,'' said Stewart McLaurin, executive director of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation's Centennial Celebration.
Reagan broadcast re-creations of Chicago Cubs games for a Des Moines, Iowa, radio station in the 1930s. While covering the team's spring training on Santa Catalina Island in 1937, he took a screen test with Warner Bros. that led to a seven-year contract with the studio and launched his movie career.
Reagan's other ties to baseball include portraying Hall of Fame pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander in the 1952 film, "The Winning Team" and joining Vin Scully in the broadcast booth for a portion of NBC's coverage of the 1989 All-Star Game.