The Blue Devils won the national championship on the hardwood this year, but some of those players—and their successors—have been taking in action on the baseball diamond as well.
Friday night, Justise Winslow headed to the Big Apple to watch the New York Yankees square off with the Baltimore Orioles at Yankee Stadium. The Houston native played an instrumental role in Duke's title run and hung out with another basketball star who knows a thing or two about leading a college team to a national championship—Carmelo Anthony, who led Syracuse to the 2003 title during his only season in the college ranks. Winslow—a potential top-five pick in next month's NBA draft—sported a Yankees cap sitting next to Anthony on the field level.
Winslow's classmate Tyus Jones got in on the MLB festivities the very next day. After the Apple Valley, Minn., native helped Kevin Garnett throw out the first pitch at a Minnesota Twins game last month, he received a personal invite to Anaheim from reigning American League MVP Mike Trout. Trout is a well-known supporter of Duke basketball and invited Jones—who owns some hardware of his own as the Final Four's Most Outstanding Player—as his guest Saturday before the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim battled the Houston Astros. A picture of the two stars hanging out in the locker room prior to the game was posted on the Angels' Twitter account.
Future Blue Devil Luke Kennard earned the status of a four-star recruit thanks to his skill on the basketball court, but he is also set to test his abilities in America's national pastime next month. The Franklin, Ohio, native tweeted Saturday that he will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch June 8 at Great American Ball Park before the Cincinnati Reds face the Philadelphia Phillies.
Last summer, former Blue Devils Jabari Parker and Rodney Hood took the mound for first pitches in their new home cities after each was drafted in the NBA draft last June. Kennard will have to hope his first pitch rates nearer to the Hood end of the spectrum.
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