Throwing out the first pitch of a World Series game is an honor usually saved for a team legend, but things are a little different for the Houston Astros in 2017.
It’s not like the Astros don’t have legends — Nolan Ryan is an executive adviser and Jeff Bagwell was inducted into the Hall of Fame this summerÂ — but given everything that’s happened in Houston this year, there was a pretty obvious choice to throw out the first ball at Minute Maid Park before Game 3 of the World Series on Friday night: Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt.
Watt’s season ended earlier this month when he suffered a fractured tibia, and he’s still on crutches, according to the Houston Chronicle, which could make for an even more dramatic scene. And while seeing their gridiron hero surely will give Astros fans even more reason to lose their minds, you also have to consider the role Watt played in helping get the city back on its feet.
As soon as it became clear Hurricane Harvey was going to leave Houston in a bad way, Watt took to social media and announced a fundraising campaign. The amount of money raised skyrocketed at an incredibly quick rate, with Watt’s efforts raising an absurd $37 million for relief.
Thumbnail photo viaÂ Kevin Jairaj/USA TODAY Sports Images