Hard work pays off, and 9-year-old superfan Zion Harvey reaped the benefits on the national stage Tuesday.
Harvey became the first child to receive a double hand transplant in 2015. He spent the past year in rigorous rehabilitation sessions working to gain strength and coordination in his newly acquired palms – making friends with idol and star Baltimore outfielder Adam Jones in the process.
With Harvey finally having gained enough confidence to throw a baseball, Jones made sure his first toss would be a meaningful one. The 31-year-old caught Harvey's ceremonial first pitch before Baltimore's game against Texas:
"Zion Harvey is a trooper," Jones told the MLB afterwards. "And the pitch he threw I might've chased."
Harvey had his hands and feet amputated after getting a life-threatening infection when he was 2.
Tuesday night was certainly the time of Harvey's life, and his pitch was only the start of a great evening all around. Jones proceeded to homer in the Orioles' 5-1 win over the AL-leading Rangers, allowing Baltimore to maintain its one-game lead on Toronto in the AL East.
More Memorable First Pitches:
-- Simone Biles Throws Innovative First Pitch At Astros Game
-- 5-Year-Old Mini-Syndergaard Throws Epic First Pitch
-- Snoop Dogg Is In Conversation For Worst First Pitch Ever