Last night, President Bush threw out the first pitch at game three of the Japan Series (the Japanese analogue to our own World Series), and, well, his arm apparently isn't what it used to be: the former president bounced the pitch before it reached home plate.
Bush has a pretty good track record of first pitches, and, to date, this appears to be the first one he's bounced.
In 2001, buoyed by the swell of patriotism that abounded in Yankee Stadium, Bush delivered a strike from the mound in game three of the World Series. Before the game, Derek Jeter warned him: "Don't bounce it, they'll boo you."
"I wanted to be sure that, if I was going to throw out the ball, I was able to do so with a little zip. You know, I didn't want people to think that their president was incapable of finding the plate," Bush said later. It was, after all, a critical time for national confidence.
Bush took the mound again for the inaugural pitch at the new Nationals Stadium in Washington, DC in 2005, and, despite getting booed, he actually missed the strike zone high.
And in April of this year, in his return to the public eye after leaving office, he put some zip on a first pitch at a Rangers game.
But not so in Japan. Bush is now 63, and everyone's arm gives out sometime. Even Nolan Ryan needed Advil after a while.