Barth, shot on Va. field, throws 1st pitch

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HOUSTON — Seventeen days after he was one of five people hit by gunfire on a baseball field, Zachary Barth stood on a baseball field again, under circumstances he never would have dreamed of as a boy.

Barth, a legislative aide for Rep. Roger Williams of Texas, threw out the first pitch at Minute Maid Park on Saturday afternoon, a little more than two weeks after being shot during a practice session for the charity Congressional Baseball Game in Alexandria, Va.

“It’s pretty exciting,” Barth said. “I’ve always loved the Astros, and as a little kid, I never dreamed that this moment would come. Obviously, this is not the reason why I wanted to be doing it. But I’ll take it.

“I’m so grateful to the Astros organization and to [team president] Reid Ryan for giving me this opportunity. It’s quite an honor.”

Barth said his recovery is going well after taking a bullet in the leg on June 14. Now that he has been off crutches for a few days, he practiced how he was going to throw his first pitch.

“I never played ball growing up,” he said before the game. “I was more of a tennis guy, but I think I’ll be able to get it there.”

Christian Boutwell is a reporter for MLB.com based in Houston. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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