The Texas Rangers today announced details for the pre-game ceremonies prior to Games 3 and 4 of the 2010 American League Division Series, which take place on Saturday and Sunday (if necessary) at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington.
Game 3, the Rangers’ first home playoff game since October 9, 1999, will be played at Saturday with a first pitch time scheduled for 4:07 p.m. CDT. 8-year-old Johnny Oates II, the grandson of the late Rangers manager Johnny Oates, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch that day. A member of the Rangers Baseball Hall of Fame, Johnny Oates guided Texas to each of its first three playoff appearances with A.L. West Division titles in 1996, 1998, and 1999. His grandson will be accompanied to the mound by the second baseman on those teams, Mark McLemore. Another member of all three clubs, Rangers Hall of Fame outfielder Rusty Greer will catch the first pitch.
Country legend and longtime Rangers fan Charley Pride, a member of the club’s new ownership group, will sing the National Anthem on Saturday. God Bless America will be performed during the seventh inning stretch by Phillips, Craig, and Deen, the Christian singing group who recorded Rangers Deer and The Claw, songs which have been played at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington for the last several weeks.
On Saturday, the colors will be presented by the 301st U.S. Air Force Honor Guard. A flyover of four F-16’s from the 301st Fighter Squadron of the Fort Worth Naval Air Station follows the National Anthem. All fans, 21 years of age and older, will receive a Rangers Rally Towel, compliments of Budweiser.
Sunday’s Game 4 (if necessary) will start at 12:07 p.m. CDT. Four prominent members of the Rangers’ first A.L. West Division championship club in 1996, pitchers John Burkett, Mike Henneman, and Ken Hill and designated hitter Mickey Tettleton, will take part in the ceremonial first pitch. Country star Neal McCoy will sing the National Anthem and Scott and Lauren Hoying will perform God Bless America.
The first 40,000 fans will receive a Rangers Rally Towel, compliments of Reliant Energy, on Sunday.
The Rangers Ballpark in Arlington parking lots will open five hours before the start of Games 3 and 4 with the Ballpark gates opening three hours prior to first pitch. With the weekend football games at Cowboys Stadium, Texas A&M-Arkansas on Saturday (2:30 p.m.) and Dallas-Tennessee on Sunday (3:15 p.m.), fans are encouraged to arrive early and allow extra time in traveling to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington for the ALDS games.