Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Maybe not: Singer Jepsen's awful pitch goes viral

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TORONTO -- She may have thrown a wish in a well but on Sunday, Carly Rae Jepsen couldn't get a baseball even close to home plate.

Jepsen, the Mission, B.C., songbird who rocketed to international fame on the strength of her smash hit Call Me Maybe, is striking out with sports fans after a disastrous ceremonial first pitch at a Tampa Bay Rays home game on Sunday.

The right-handed Jepsen, who was in Florida to perform as part of the Rays' post-game concert series, toed the rubber and, aiming for the catcher sitting 18 metres away, spiked the baseball directly to the ground to her left.

When she realized where the ball had gone, she covered her face, laughed, and raised her hands in mock pride.

The Rays commentary team immediately compared it with the first pitch thrown by Howard Stern collaborator Gary Dell'Abate, who in May 2009 slung the baseball well over the backstop, hitting the umpire in the chest.

Jepsen's video has since gone viral, running on ESPN's marquee SportsCenter program, and being anointed by sports website Deadspin as the "worst" first pitch.

The 27-year-old star has taken the online notoriety in stride, taking to Twitter to post a text-message conversation between her and her brother, who mocked Jepsen for the toss with the hash tag "sticktoyourdayjob."

Jepsen further showed her sense of humour about the incident in another tweet.

"So apparently I made ESPN with my fail of a pitch," she wrote. "Lol- Daddy must be so proud."

Curiously, this wasn't Jepsen's first-ever first pitch. In April, Jepsen threw a strike to the plate in a game between the Baltimore Orioles and Minnesota Twins.

Perhaps buoyed by her performance, the Rays went on to post an error-free 5-0 victory over the Houston Astros.

See the pitch at: http://wfp.to/VYJ

 

-- The Canadian Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 16, 2013 D2

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