Patriots legend Rob Gronkowski delivers most predictable first pitch before Patriots’ Day game

Cleveland Guardians v Boston Red Sox
Cleveland Guardians v Boston Red Sox / Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/GettyImages

The Red Sox game starts bright and early on the Massachusetts and Maine-specific holiday of Patriots' Day. An 11:10 a.m. first pitch commemorates the battles of Lexington and Concord, some of the earliest of the Revolutionary War.

It's fitting that the Red Sox invited a former Patriot to throw out the first pitch on the New England staple holiday. Patriots legend and four-time Super Bowl champion Rob Gronkowski threw his first pitch the only way he knows how — by not throwing it at all.

Gronkowski took the mound in a Boston jersey branded with his trademark 87. Tanner Houck crouched, ready to receive the pitch that never came.

Gronk wound up and spiked the ball into the dirt on the mound. He raised his arms to rally the Fenway Park crowd and they responded with cheers that rang through the sunny Boston morning.

Rob Gronkowski's spiked ceremonial first pitch was perfect opening to the Red Sox's Patriots' Day game

Gronkowski had a busy morning even before his first pitch. He served as the grand marshal of the Boston Marathon — he made an appearance at the starting line in Hopkinton and he spiked another ball at the finish, just miles from Fenway Park on Boylston Street.

The tight end praised the city of Boston for its energy on Marathon Monday and he called the race a "26-mile parade," with fans cheering for runners along their entire journey. The Red Sox home game and the Marathon are staples of Boston's Patriots' Day festivities, and Gronk's first pitch was the perfect way to bring them both together.

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