Boucher puts own spin on first pitch

Boucher puts own spin on first pitch

Boucher puts own spin on first pitch
ST. PETERSBURG -- Tampa Bay Lightning head coach Guy Boucher was on hand to throw out the first pitch Friday, and he threw a strike.

Granted, it was of a different variety.

The hockey coach took a stick and hit the ball off the mound right down the middle into the glove of Stephen Vogt, who was equipped with his own stick and glove to receive it.

"We talked before the game, and I said, 'Come on, why don't you just use a hockey stick?'" Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "He said, 'No, I gotta throw it.' And I said, no you don't. If you pull this off, it'll be on ESPN and whatever it is up in Canada too. I'm certain that had to get some play."

It did actually make SportsCenter's Top 10 plays, coming in at No. 2.

"I told you so," Maddon said after he learned that it made the list.

The Rays originally hosted Boucher and members of the Lightning to celebrate the hockey team's 20th year in the NHL.

Maddon said that if he was required to return the favor in the winter at a Lightning game, he'd be at a loss of creativity.

"There's no way to top what he did yesterday," Maddon said. "That was outstanding."