If there's one enduring image from the last time the Philadelphia Phillies won the World Series, it's Tug McGraw's outstretched leap for the heavens after retiring the last out that made it seem like the late pitcher was on some kind of mid-air torture rack. If you watch the stands closely during the games at Citizen's Bell this weekend, you'll see that some Phillie fans have even pirated Tug's famous "Ya Gotta Believe!" slogan as their own, even though he originally coined the phrase for the 1973 Mets.
Unsurprisingly, Tug's son, and popular country singer, Tim McGraw has been chosen to throw out the first pitch for Saturday's Game 3 in Philadelphia. It's a nice nod to McGraw, who was close with his son in the later parts of his life, even though he barely had contact with him before his eigteenth birthday (part of that story is told by Tim here in an interview with Larry King from 2002 ... thank you Wikipedia).
The actual anthem in that game will be sung by Taylor Swift (who sings a song named "Tim McGraw"). And in Game 4 it's going to be Patti LaBelle. Conspicuously absent from the list thus far? Jon Bon Jovi, of course. I guess they're holding the whole "from New Jersey" thing against him here.