Young Child with Autism Tosses out Epic First Pitch at Citizens Bank Park

Tim KeeneyContributor IApril 22, 2013

As a part of Citizen Bank Park's Autism Awareness Night on Saturday, young Joseph Dever was given a chance to throw out the first pitch before the Philadelphia Phillies took on the St. Louis Cardinals. 

Sticking with the baseball lingo, he knocked it out of the park. 

As you can see in the video above, courtesy of, the entertaining Dever put on a show to behold. 

First, he put his glove over his mouth to "hide the communication." Then, he waved off the catcher—aka the Phillie Phanatic—and before his windup, he got the crowd into it as they cheered on with genuine excitement.

To top off the heartwarming moment, he threw a dead strike and dropped to his knees in perfect Brad Lidge style before being tackled in excitement and celebration. 

Have a day, Joseph. This is a moment you won't forget for the rest of your life. 

In addition to this youngster's unforgettable day, it's worth noting that the Phillies organization deserves credit here, too. This is the 11th year it has put on a dedicated night to help increase awareness of autism, and it just goes to show you that sports can sometimes be more than just a game between world-class athletes.

They can provide the stage for inspirational events. They can give us heartfelt, joyous stories that remind us of the good in the world. And they can create everlasting moments for amazing young people just like Dever. 

I don't know about you, but I could go for more first pitches exactly like this one.