Baseball gets Justice — Sotomayor to throw first pitch
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, a longtime avid fan of the New York Yankees baseball team, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before Saturday’s game against the Boston Red Sox.
A child of Puerto Rican parents, she grew up in the Bronx not far from where the Yankees play. Sotomayor, who was appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate last month, is the first Hispanic justice on the high court.
The Yankees said ceremonial first pitches by Sotomayor and by Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli on Friday will take place during the team’s final regular season homestand to commemorate Hispanic heritage month.
“Having Justice Sotomayor, a South Bronx native, participate in our yearly Hispanic heritage month celebration is very exciting, as she is an inspiration to so many,” Manuel Garcia, Yankees Director of Latino Affairs, said. “We are proud to welcome her and President Martinelli to our new home.”
The Yankees, with the best record in baseball, are playing in a new stadium this season.
Sotomayor had a famous brush with Major League Baseball when she was a District Court judge with a decision that helped end the baseball strike of 1994-1995. “Some say that Judge Sotomayor saved baseball,” Obama said in nominating her to the Supreme Court.
For Sotomayor’s official duties as a justice, the Supreme Court will next meet in a private conference next Tuesday and the new term officially begins on Oct. 5.
She is not the only baseball fan on the nine-member court. Justice Samuel Alito is known as a longtime supporter of the Philadelphia Phillies.
Photo credit: Reuters/Robert Sorbo (New York Yankees starting pitcher A.J. Burnett)