Giannis Antetokounmpo: “It was really heavy [the ball]. I thought it would be lighter. I saw Aaron Judge hitting the ball into the stands. That’s amazing. You’ve got to be really strong to do that. I would be a terrible baseball player.”
The NBA’s Most Valuable Player visited Yankee Stadium in the Bronx before Monday night’s New York Yankees game versus the Tampa Bay Rays, hanging out with some of the Yankees biggest stars on the field during warmups and even taking some batting practice off the tee in the batting cages.
Giannis admitted he had never touched a baseball before at the age of 24 and said he thought the ball was heavier than he originally thought.
If he was surprised by the feel of the ball, he was probably shocked by the feel of the bat too, as Giannis attempted to hit off the tee to the hysterical enjoyment of the Yankees players on hand.
Giannis was being helped by Yankees hitting coach Marcus Thames, as he was holding his hands way too low and resembling a two-handed tennis backhand and standing way too far away from home plate.
After hitting a couple soft ground balls, Giannis whiffed one of the balls sitting motionless on the tee, inciting laughs all around the cage.
Although Giannis can dunk a basketball from around the foul line and swat a seven-foot center’s shot attempt, hitting a baseball just might be the only thing this superhuman athlete can’t do.