Cincinnati mayor takes jokes about pitch in stride

CINCINNATI -- Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory would like to be remembered for reforms he brought to city government. Right now, he's best known on the Internet for his off-the-mark ceremonial first pitch.

The pitch was short and several feet to the first-base side of the plate before a sellout crowd Monday at Great American Ball Park. It's been played over and over on Web sites and reviewed by pundits.

Mallory is doing his best to take the ribbing in stride. In jest, he blamed his catcher, former Reds star Eric Davis, for the errant throw.

"Eric Davis missed the sign," Mallory told The Cincinnati Enquirer. "I called for a pitchout."

Mallory, who turned 45 on Opening Day and admits he is not much of an athlete, said he knew immediately that his throw was way off target. He hoped to make amends when given another chance Wednesday night on ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live."

"Who would have thought such a bad pitch could bring such good attention to the city of Cincinnati?" Mallory said. "I have an opportunity to talk about great things that are going on in the city."

The good news -- the Reds won the opener 5-1 against the Chicago Cubs.