The Cincinnati Reds will bring some Super Bowl magic to Opening Day.
Cincinnati Bengals quarterback, NFL Comeback of the Year honoree, wholesome Midwestern dude and fashion icon Joe Burrow will throw out the first pitch during the Reds' home opener on April 12, Reds officials announced April 5. His battery mate? None other than the Orange and Black's head coach Zac Taylor.
And there's still another Bengal who will be on the field at Great American Ball Park that day. Wide receiver Ja'marr Chase will present MLB's National League Rookie of the Year award to Reds second baseman Jonathan India. In 150 games during the 2021 campaign, India batted .269, slugged .459 and had an on-base percentage of .376. He also scored 98 runs, had 69 runs batted in and stole 12 bases. In addition to MLB's rookie honors, India also took home the Sporting News' National League Rookie of the Year award, the MLB Players Choice Award for Outstanding Rookie in the NL and Baseball America selected India as its Rookie of the Year.
Chase is no slouch, himself, having been named the NFL's 2021 Offensive Rookie of the Year just days before he took the field at Super Bowl LVI in February. Chase, a first-round draft pick, had a stellar 2021-2022 season, pulling down 81 catches for 1,455 yards along with 13 touchdowns. He set a new Bengals record for receiving yards during the regular season and has more than any rookie since the Super Bowl was created in 1966, among other accomplishments. Chase is just the third Bengals player to win Offensive Rookie of the Year and the first since 1992.
The Reds and Bengals traded excitement on social media Tuesday night.
"See you soon, AFC champs," the Reds said to the Bengals.
"Team Cincinnati," the Bengals replied.
On Feb. 13, the Bengals lost 20-23 to the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LVI, Cincinnati's first shot at the Vince Lombardi trophy since 1989. After earning a 10-7 regular-season record, winning the AFC North, and pulling out magical win after magical win in the post-season — including the AFC Championship — the Bengals were thwarted by sacks and a lack of consistency. But shortly after the Super Bowl, the Bengals extended Taylor's contract through 2026, and bookies gave the Bengals higher odds for the 2022-2023 season. The Bengals have announced the team's opponents for the 2022-2023 season. The full calendar is expected in May.
Team Cincinnati 🤝 https://t.co/fb6rB2B4kS— Cincinnati Bengals (@Bengals) April 5, 2022
The 2022 MLB season begins on April 7 (later than planned, thanks to the 99-day lockout between MLB and players) and will see the Cincinnati Reds visit the Atlanta Braves. The Reds' home opener takes place at 4:10 p.m. April 12, as Cincinnati takes on the intrastate rival Cleveland Guardians at Great American Ball Park. The game will be preceded by Cincinnati's iconic Findlay Market Opening Day Parade, for which Reds lifer Barry Larkin will serve as grand marshal. A number of bars, restaurants and communities are hosting additional pre-game activities, and GABP is ready with new menu items for hungry fans.
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