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Former President George W. Bush to throw out ceremonial first pitch before World Series opener

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Former President George W. Bush, the former Rangers owner, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before Texas plays the Arizona Diamondbacks in the World Series opener on Friday night.

This will be Bush’s fourth World Series ceremonial first pitch but his first before an opener.

Bush, 77. headed the group that bought the Rangers from Eddie Chiles in 1998 and was general partner through November 1994, when he stepped down as he prepared to become Texas governor.

Bush was U.S. president from 2001-09 and threw out the ceremonial first pitch before Game 3 of the 2001 World Series at Yankee Stadium between New York and Arizona. With heavy security following the 9-11 terrorist attacks, Bush wore a bullet-proof vest.

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As Bush warmed up beneath the stands of old Yankee Stadium, the Yankees’ Derek Jeter told him “Don’t bounce it, they will boo you,” Bush later recalled.

Bush threw out ceremonial first pitches with his father, former President George H.W. Bush, before Game 4 of the 2010 World Series in Texas and before Game 5 of the 2017 World Series in Houston.

George W. Bush’s group sold the Rangers in 1998 to Thomas Hicks, who sold the team in 2010 to the current ownership group headed by Ray Davis.

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Rangers Hall of Fame catcher Iván Rodríguez will be behind the plate for Bush’s pitch, Major League Baseball said Thursday.

Former Rangers star Adrián Beltré will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 to Rangers Hall of Famer Ferguson Jenkins.

Grammy Award winner H.E.R. will perform the national anthem before the opener and Pearl Peterson, this year’s Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s national youth talent performer, will sing it before Game 2.

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb