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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pacquaio trains early to pitch in Giants-Padres game

MANILA, Philippines - Manny Pacquiao had an early training schedule Monday (Tuesday in Manila) in order to accommodate a commitment to appear in a major league baseball game in San Francisco.

As befitting his superstar status, Manny Pacquiao is set to throw the ceremonial pitch in Tuesday’s (Wednesday in Manila) game between the San Francisco Giants and the San Diego Padres at the AT & T ballpark in San Francisco, allowing him some time off from his hectic training for his mega-fight with Ricky Hatton.

The world’s pound-for-pound king will take a private jet in the afternoon for the hour-long trip to the Bay Area accompanied by Roach, Top Rank Promotion’s Bob Arum and other key members of Team Pacquiao.

Pacquiao will also address his Filipino fans during the pre-game event billed by the Giants baseball team as “Filipino Heritage Night." Bubble-head dolls of the 30-year old southpaw would also be given away.

At 7:07 (around 11 a.m. Manila time), Pacquiao will troop to the mound to throw out the first pitch.

He’s expected to stay for a while and watch the Giants-Padres game at the press box.

“There has been an incredible response. Fans are very excited that Manny is coming to our ballpark," said Giants special events director Faham Zakariaei.

The General Santos City native flies back to the City of Angels later in the evening.

“We will fly out of L.A. in the afternoon, and he attends the game to throw the first pitch as the plane waits for him. Then we fly back to L.A. the same night," said Arum, who just returned back from Manila to watch the Nonito Donaire-Raul Martinez title fight.

This marks the second time Pacquiao is doing a ceremonial pitch in a major league game. In 2005, he became the first Filipino to throw the first pitch during the game between the Los Angeles Angels Anaheim and the Oakland A’s

Other famous personalities who made the ceremonial pitch in the past include basketball great Michael Jordan, boxing legend Bernard Hopkins, popular actress Eva Longoria and former US President George W. Bush. -GMANews.TV


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