Luke Kennard throws out first pitch at Cincinnati Reds game

Luke Kennard committed to Duke to play basketball, but Monday he showed off some of his skills on the baseball diamond.

The Franklin, Ohio, native threw out the ceremonial first pitch in his home state before the Cincinnati Reds hosted the Philadelphia Phillies at the Great American Ballpark. Although he will wear No. 5 for the Blue Devils on the court, Kennard donned a No. 10 jersey Monday as he threw to All-Star third baseman Todd Frazier.

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Kennard may have surprised a few fans with his right-handed toss, given that he shoots lefty on the hardwood and said before the game he stopped playing baseball in the sixth grade. The 6-foot-5 shooting guard joins former Duke players Tyus Jones, Rodney Hood and Jabari Parker in making appearances at baseball games, and he more than held his own.

Kennard's pitch may have lacked the biting action of Hood's slider before a Salt Lake Bees game last summer, but it certainly ranks better than Parker's one-hopper in front of a Milwaulkee Brewers crowd.

The four-star recruit spent plenty of time mingling with the local fans as well, posing for photos in front of home plate during the pregame festivities.

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The 6-foot-5 shooting guard was recently named the Parade National Player of the Year following a senior season in which he averaged 38 points per game, adding to his list of accolades that already included a McDonald's All-American selection and the two-time title of Ohio's Mr. Basketball.

Kennard will enroll at Duke in August, joining other top recruits Brandon Ingram, Derryck Thornton and Chase Jeter as part of the Blue Devils' top-ranked recruiting class.


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