Rox to celebrate local heroes, armed forces before opener

Denver fireman, police officer will be part of first-pitch ceremonies at Coors Field

Rox to celebrate local heroes, armed forces before opener

DENVER -- A Denver firefighter and a Denver police officer will participate in first-pitch ceremonies before Friday's Rockies home opener against the Cubs at Coors Field.

Continuing the tradition of a season-ticket holder participating in the pregame home opener festivities, the first of two ceremonial pitches will be thrown by Butch Hess, an original season-ticket holder from 1993 and a Station 6 Denver firefighter.

Denver police officer John Adsit, who was severely injured when hit by a car -- the motorist of which was suffering a seizure -- while monitoring a peaceful protest by Denver East High School students on Dec. 3, will throw the second first pitch. Adsit, who was hospitalized for 11 weeks and underwent 11 surgeries, will be joined at Coors Field by his wife, Michelle, sons Ronald and Ryland, and daughters Jordan and Morgan.

Starting at 1:30 p.m. MT, Opening Day ceremonies will feature some of the Rockies' traditional pageantry, which honors the armed forces.

Here are some of the events:

• A parade around the warning track that will pay tribute to all branches of the United States military.

• Members of the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard will present our nation's colors, while an oversized American flag is unfurled on the field by 150 uniformed personnel from the military, as well as Denver Police and Fire Departments.

• The U.S. Air Force Academy Band's Stellar Brass will perform "The Star-Spangled Banner," with featured vocalist Tech. Sgt. Julie Bradley.

• Immediately after the anthem will be a flyover of F-16 Cs, supported by the Colorado International Guard's 120th Fighter Squadron, out of Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora, Colo.

• Before the Rockies take the field, third baseman Nolan Arenado and second baseman DJ LeMahieu will receive their 2014 Rawlings Gold Glove Awards. It is the second consecutive Gold Glove Award for Arenado, the first for LeMahieu.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page, Thomas Harding and Friends at This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.