Elder Stevenson Throws First Pitch at Angels Game

Contributed By Karen Kimball, Church News contributor

  • ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA

Elder Gary E. Stevenson prepares to deliver the first pitch to Angels pitcher Cam Bedrosian at the 2016 Mormon Night at the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Stadium.  Photo by Riz Espinili.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Stadium on Friday, July 15.

About 2,500 Church members and friends attended the game for the 19th annual Mormon Night with the Angels, during which the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim hosted the Chicago White Sox.

The event is one of the largest and longest-running group nights with the Angels organization in Orange County.

Last year, Elder Stevenson, then serving as the Presiding Bishop, attended the Mormon Night event with his family. Arte Moreno, the owner of the Angels, invited him to come again and throw out the ceremonial first pitch. This year, Elder Stevenson returned with his entire family for this special event.

Elder Ruben Acosta, Area Seventy, accompanied Elder Stevenson during the first pitch ceremonies. “I’m going off the mound,” Elder Stevenson said before going onto the field. “I’ve practiced a little bit with my sons.”

Elder Stevenson threw the first pitch from the top of the mound at Angel Stadium, a distance of 60.5’ from home plate.

Several LDS youth from Orange County were recognized in the pregame ceremonies for their outstanding achievements in academics, sports, and leadership. Other LDS youth participated throughout the evening as the “play ball” announcer, bat boy, and the “steals third base” participant.

Elder Stevenson took time during the game to greet members of the Church in attendance.

Ken Hutton, an employee at Angel Stadium for the past 39 years and a member of the Anaheim California Stake in Orange County, got the opportunity to meet Elder Stevenson. “I knew he was coming,” Ken Hutton said. “We are excited to have a General Authority here.”

Elder Gary E. Stevenson starts his windup for the first pitch at the 2016 Mormon Night with the Angels. Photo by Riz Espinili.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles acknowledges many of the thousands of Church members who attended the 2016 Mormon Family Night at Angel Stadium. Photo by Riz Espinili.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Elder Rueben Acosta, an Area Seventy, meet Church member Ken Hutton, who has been working this section of Angel Stadium for over 39 years of Angels home games. Photo by Riz Espinili.

Elder Gary E. Stevenson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Elder Rueben Acosta, an Area Seventy, acknowledge many of the thousands of Church members who attended the 2016 Mormon Family Night at Angel Stadium. Photo by Riz Espinili.

Annabelle, 3, and Brandon, 5, meet Elder Gary E. Stevenson, who served as mission president in the Japan Nagoya Mission when their father, Michael Witham, was there as a missionary. Photo by Riz Espinili.