Reds invite Ruth Watkins, 96, to throw the first pitch - Tucson News Now

96-year-old Reds fan throws first pitch

Mildred Kincaid, Betty Clancy, Rosie and Ruth Watkins Mildred Kincaid, Betty Clancy, Rosie and Ruth Watkins

Ruth Watkins is not your average senior citizen.

At the age of 96, she rides on the back of motorcycles, and being a big Cincinnati Reds fan, she even plays a little baseball.

"I don't have a season pass or anything like that, but over the years I've been to many, many, many games," said Ruth.

Instead of just watching the Reds from the stands like she has for more than 70 years, Ruth went on a new adventure.

"Let's talk Crosley Field... I sent a picture in to the Reds, and they chose to have me come," she said.

She sent a picture of herself, Rosie the Red, Mildred Kincaid and Betty Clancy from the Twin Lakes Baseball Barbecue picnic last summer to the Reds. The Reds later called her to invite her to their May 8 game against the Braves to throw the first pitch.

On Wednesday, she did just that. It was an honor she says that made her quite popular.

"The phone just rang off the hook. I couldn't eat breakfast. I couldn't get dressed, but then again, if you're going to be a STAR, you got to put up with that type of thing, right?" explained Ruth.

Her family, including sons David and Tim Parks, were just as thrilled for their mom's first pitch.

"It's as exciting as when she took me to Crosley Field when I was 9-years-old with a dozen of my friends," said Tim Parks.

Before her star moment, Ruth had to give her baseball arm some practice, and with the support of her family and community at Twin Lakes Senior Living, Ruth was finally ready for her moment.

And a big moment it was.

"Everybody said I did great," said Ruth about her first pitch throw. Her friends in the picture, Mildred and Betty, were also at the game to cheer her on.

Ruth says she's been to more than 100 games, including the World Series in the 70s.  She says her favorite thing about going to the games are the hot dogs, and her current favorite player is Brandon Phillips.

What is Ruth's secret to longevity? "Nothing more than good genes and staying active."

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly